RELEVENTS: Major Kim D’Amaro
Major Kim D’Amaro, territorial Christian education director, talks about her favorite books, her own continuing theological education, and the special interactions and relationships she’s formed during her morning soda ‘routine.’
I study at the Alliance Theological Seminary in Nyack, N.Y., and it has ignited a passion for spiritual formation within me. It’s transformed my spiritual walk and has deepened my relationship with the Lord. I also have the great privilege to be a mentor to students in the Initiation to Spiritual Formation class. After class, I mentor a group of women for about an hour. We are investing in one another’s lives and building a relationship. It’s been so powerful and fulfilling to be a part of this process.
Building relationships is so important to me. I think that’s the crux of who we are as people. My routine of picking up a Diet Coke at McDonalds in the morning has actually helped me build relationships. Every time, I drive up to the same window and see the same familiar faces. They know who I am and what I do. Sometimes, they even say through the loudspeaker, “It’s so good to see you this morning. We know what you want!” Every day, the lady at the window greets me with “Hey Mama!” and has my drink ready with the straw opened. These small gestures make my day! I hope that one day, someone will see the Lord through our interactions.
I try to go back to Buffalo, N.Y., a few times a year to see my family. I don’t have any brothers or sisters, but I have many cousins. I try to be a positive influence in my family and to remind them that God loves them. I also love the food from Buffalo. We were the first ones to order Buffalo wings with our pizza. And now, everyone does it!
Some books I’ve enjoyed over the years: The Practice of the Presence of God has taught me to recognize the Lord’s presence in the little things in life, whether it’s while I’m doing the dishes or walking down a hall. Prayer can happen during these times and while on your knees. A Tale of Three Kings is about looking within and seeing how we deal with our own brokenness. It is in this process that we develop the character and qualities of a good leader. The Velveteen Rabbit is about being authentic. It’s important for me to be genuine and real.
I’ve started journaling and writing spiritual lessons based on Scripture that has meaning in my life. These can be verses or any thought that touches me when the Lord speaks to my heart. I record those moments. In difficult times, I can look back to my journal and be reminded that God does speak, even in silence. It also reminds me to always take time to focus on Him, to read Scripture, and to practice the spiritual disciplines.
I wear a silver ring on each hand. The ring on my left hand has crosses and “John 3:16” engraved on it. It reminds me that, in Christ, I am forgiven. He loves me and He died for me. No matter what Satan throws at me—the Lord has covered me. The ring on my right hand has the ichthus (fish) symbol. It represents Christ and reminds me that I’m seeking Him every day.
Interview by Hugo Bravo