October 14 will be Baby Dedication Sunday. It's so fun to watch these meaningful moments, as the little ones melt our hearts. But often, we don't get to hear or see how God does in fact work in the lives of those who are dedicated.
Gabby Pido was dedicated at Ventura Missionary Church in the late 1990's. Her parents, Sandy and Laurie, committed to raise her to follow Jesus, and this church committed to partner with them in this endeavor.
Gabby is the youngest in a family of seven, having one older sister and three older brothers. Her parents did raise her in an environment that pointed to Jesus. Not only did she attend Sunday School, but also attended Ventura Missionary Preschool and School as well. Throughout her life, her parents have urged her to follow God's principles and rise above circumstances. It was while she was attending Ventura Missionary School that Gabby invited Jesus into her heart, encouraged to do so by her first grade teacher, Rachel Gutierrez.
Over the years, many others from Ventura Missionary have inspired Gabby in her faith. She loved being a part of Jeni Vargas' small group in high school and getting to grow friendships in that group. Lili Whittaker and Emma Woods were other people that God placed in Gabby's life to encourage her in her spiritual growth.
An avid soccer player, Gabby has often found herself in situations where she was among peers who chose not to live God's way. As captain on several teams, Gabby led by example, choosing not to engage in the negative behavior and gently encouraging and modeling positive behavior.
Amy Holden and Pastor Doug have played a tremendous role in Gabby's life during her high school years. At one point they asked her to be a counselor at summer camp. After that experience she continued to serve and now leads a group of middle school girls. She loves the bonding that occurs as she interacts with these students. She says that knowing that she needs to be a role model for them motivates her to grow in her own faith. She adds, "And they're so much fun!"
Gabby believes that God led her to stay in Ventura for college, which has allowed her to continue serving in the Middle School ministry at Ventura Missionary and to join the staff as the student ministries office intern. She was quick to say that she loves her job!
When asked if she had anything she wanted to say to her church family, this eloquent, wise young woman said this: "Trust in God and let Him guide you, even if it's hard. It's always the right path, and there are always good places to go." Gabby's parents decision to dedicate their daughter to the Lord isn't simply a past tense action, Gabby Pido IS dedicated to Jesus.
If you would like to dedicate your child(ren) on October 14, SIGN-UP and plan to attend the Dedication Class on Thursday, October 11 at 6:30 pm in Room 325. God writes beautiful stories and we would be honored to partner with you as you raise your child to follow Jesus.