Stories of Hope

A Story of Hope from Angela Kolb

My story at Hope has been a journey with many twists and turns. For many years I would come for the worship music and an encouraging word but never got involved in any of the ministries. All of this changed about six years ago. In 2012 my journey led me to turning my life around and coming to know Christ. My Mom asked if I was interested in going on the Urban Plunge and so I decided to go with her. I thought if anything it would be a weekend spent with my Mom and a little getaway from all life was throwing at me. Needless to say the Urban Plunge changed my life and changed my attitude towards the City and the people that lived in it. As a child I had everything I needed and more but I did not have a church family and a real relationship with Jesus. As we were driving thru some of the poorest areas of the city God started to change my heart. I was seeing things that I had never really seen before because I was too focused on myself and my own needs. I was a very selfish person for most of my life. My needs always came before others and I never really appreciated anything that was provided for me.

God was using this trip to stir up my emotions for the inner city and to Sing again. But this time to sing for His Glory not my own. Hope Church’s Choir Director just happened to be on this trip. At some point my Mom had a conversation with Jennifer and she then asked me how I could not be using the talent that God had given me. I grew up singing and dancing and even made living singing and dancing for many years. That conversation really stuck with me after I got home. It took about six months for me to get my work schedule to where I was not working on Saturday and Sunday. That opened up the door for me to show up to a choir rehearsal. Turns out that was the best decision I ever made. Singing for the Lord became a passion for me. From that point I was able to form new friendships within the church. 

I also got involved with Oasis of Hope to see how I could help within the inner city. That too became a passion for me to serve and to make a difference. The kids I have mentored since then have taught me so much. Just knowing them and spending time with them has taught me to be grateful for every single thing God provides. In 2013 my Mom and I decided to take the Justice Tour to Birmingham, AL. Once again God stirred a huge passion in me for the Civil Rights movement. I grew to respect and really appreciate everything that MLK Jr. stood for. I wanted to learn as much as possible. And boy did I learn a lot on this trip. Once I got home from this trip I was on fire. My passion for Justice and Equality was all I could think about. From there I got involved in some organizations in Memphis and I continued to educate myself. To this day I still have so much passion for the oppressed and try my best to educate the oppressors.

During my time at Hope I have been blessed to sing more and more for the Lord. I continue to sing in the Choir and God blessed me with the opportunity to sing on the Frontline with the Praise and Worship team. Currently I am also part of the Worship Team for the Singles Community. Having the opportunity to Worship God in this way is so fulfilling and has really strengthened my Faith. Singing for the Lord is all I ever really want to do. No matter what I’m going thru when I’m singing His praises it just gives me such peace and joy. 

For the last six months I’ve been involved in MICAH which stands for Memphis Interfaith Coalition for Action and Hope. Right now we are focusing on Education reform, Economic Equality, and Immigration and Intercultural Equality within the City of Memphis and Shelby County. Serving in this community and sharing my passion has brought me so much joy. MICAH is a growing coalition of 45 faith-based, community-based and labor organizations joining together to give a more powerful voice for issues of justice in our city. We seek to educate ourselves and others on racism and oppression in these areas of interest. I love that we are a group made up of different religions, cultures, and generations. God is using all of these ministries to help shape and mold me into the woman He longs for me to be. The worship music and the message each and every weekend is amazing and motivates me to continue growing. Hope Church has changed my life and I look forward to growing in my faith at this wonderful Church.

<Angela Kolb>