Roger and Pam Erlandsen

Erlandsen2When Pastor Paul approached my husband Roger and me about hosting and leading a Growth Group a year ago, we were frankly a bit frightened to commit. But, Pastor Paul visited with us and explained the program and concept of Growth Groups. He prayed with us and asked us to pray for God’s wisdom and guidance in making our decision. From our prayers we knew God was leading us to step out of our comfort zone and to trust Him. We did.

We were given 20 and 30 year old singles and couples and our anxiety and fear reared its ugly head again. Roger and I had many questions. Could a couple in their sixties relate to folks half their age? What could we offer these folks as we are not trained theologians or experts on the Bible? Would the group gel? Would these young people be willing to openly share about their faith in front of one another? What if they had questions and concerns about theology, what would they expect from us as leaders? Although Roger and I were a bit apprehensive, we again felt the Holy Spirit was leading us to do this and that God would provide us with wisdom and direction. He provided resources through prayer and the Word, other Christian mentors, and our life experiences. We have had such a positive response and return from simply opening up ourselves and our home to these wonderful young people! They are always willing to reach out and help others. We have learned so much from these new friendships we’ve established. We are encouraged by the level and strength of faith these young adults possess, especially with all that is going on in our world today. Our group has become a cohesive source for support and learning and we all have a greater understanding of God’s word and lasting friendships have been formed.

We have developed a deeper meaning of the word “community” and what it means to witness to others. Roger and I feel we have grown in faith and as a couple in Christ. God has certainly blessed our lives with this group. We anticipate that eventually some will want to one day host a group of their own!

The Rest of the Story

“The growth group Roger and Pam lead has been a blessing to me. I am a little introverted in larger groups but it didn’t take long to become comfortable. Roger and Pam have been very welcoming and wonderful leaders. They set an example of living for the Lord and seeking to learn more about His word. Our group is a mix of people from different occupations, backgrounds, etc. and it is a very welcoming group. We are allowed to contribute, offer questions and opinions without judgment or fear and grow. It is a blessing”.
-Tom Berg

“This growth group has impacted my life in several ways. I have met some amazing believers in Christ who share the same passion for Christ as I do. It’s also allowed me to grow in my faith and I’ve come to lead the study myself a handful of times in preparing to start a growth group in the future. It’s been a boost spiritually to help me stay focused on the path laid out by Christ. Lastly, I’ve gotten to know Pastor Matthew and his wife, Jonas and his family and Andy and his family and it’s been a privilege to personally speak with them and enjoy their company”.
-Joel Fischer

“Being involved in this growth group has given me stability throughout my week. I look forward to getting together every Wednesday for fellowship and encouragement. It is so great having an older couple to look up to and turn to for advice about life issues. I am extremely grateful for their guidance, love, and most importantly friendship”.
-Allison Muhs

“This group has become an extension of my family. After spending time with them, I’m refreshed and challenged in my walk with Christ; their company has become a safe place to share prayer requests, ask tough questions, and share life.”
-Rachel Goodman

“Roger and Pam were so welcoming to me when I first attended their growth group. As someone who is exploring Christianity, I was nervous to attend a growth group. However, this couple made me feel truly welcome and opened their home to me and everyone else in our group so that we could learn more about God and His word. They are truly a unique couple that God is using in marvelous ways so that others may come to know Him”.
-A blessed member

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