Kris & Sarah Wise Join Emmaus Ministries!
Tell us a little bit about yourselves?
Kris: My name is Kris Wise. I’m 30. I have a B.A. in Digital Media from the University of Central Florida. I like hiking, camping & gaming. I’m a co-adventurer with my wife Sarah and my son Lincoln.
Sarah: We used to call ourselves monogamous adventurers, but we had to change it when we had Link. My name is Sarah Wise. I have a B.A. in History, B.A. in Public Administration, and a Certificate in Nonprofit Management from UCF. I also have an Academic Master of Divinity from Asbury Theological Seminary with a course focus in Church History. I like reading to the soothing sounds of a Netflix fireplace, baking random midnight cravings, coloring and journaling. The Wise Family is a hub of self-proclaimed nerds. We enjoy Star Trek marathons, dressing up in period costumes for Civil War reenactments, Role Playing games, and international media (aka anime, manga, K-drama, and foreign films).
How did you meet?
Kris: I first met Sarah on Facebook through the old “You should know this person” feature. This was when you had to have a college email to be on Facebook. I didn’t know her but we had a lot of the same friends. I was invited to be on leadership at the Central Florida Wesley Foundation (a UCF Campus Ministry) and noticed that she was actually asked to come to the same leadership retreat. We hit it off and we’ve been adventuring ever since.
Sarah: The very first thing he said to me was “hey, are you the girl in the flower pot on Facebook?” (a reference to my profile picture at the time). We eventually bonded over our mutual love of all things nerdy and the fact that we were leading the same small group at CFL Wesley.
What are your faith stories?
Kris: I grew up in the United Methodist Church. Originally from Alabama, my family later moved to Orlando, FL. I continued to go to a United Methodist Church through high school. Through this time I claimed Christianity with my mouth but my heart still didn’t know what that looked like. Everything changed when I joined Wesley Foundation. I met others who acted as if they had found a hidden treasure and were doing everything to keep it close to their heart.
Sarah: I also come from a church-going family, though my story is a little different. While Kris may have struggled with the application of his faith, I outright denied faith for much of my youth. I was a crusader of atheism even while my family continued going to church. It wasn’t until I was college aged that I came to know God as my Savior and Lord. We met at Wesley at precisely the time when God was doing something profound in both of our lives.
How does your faith affect the way you live your lives?
Kris: Our time at Wesley, radically changed how we lived out our faith. It wasn’t about checking off the right boxes. It was about a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, listening to the Holy Spirit and living in authentic relationship with those around me.
Sarah: The key that clicked for both of us was a faith with feet within the context of one-on-one discipleship. Meeting with a mentor, getting in the Word, and applying our faith in tangible ways all changed the trajectory of our lives. After spending five years each at Wesley we were equipped with a robust relationship with Christ and a deep desire to serve God’s Kingdom. Kris and I continued to serve in ministry through local churches, nonprofits and seminary even while asking God the “what next” question.
How did you connect with Emmaus?
Kris: I let Sarah take this one.
Sarah: I actually met Tom at Asbury Seminary when I was giving a lecture about the doctrine of the atonement. At the time, Kris and I had been in a season of intentional prayer and discernment about what God wanted from us. We were prepared to move anywhere in the state, country or world. We were more than shocked to even entertain the idea that God could have something for us right here in our home city. Through that initial meeting with Tom, we eventually came to know the vision of Emmaus and the staff. Pieces clicked, and even in the midst of other job opportunities and career paths, God continued to bring Emmaus to the forefront of our prayers.
Why are you excited to be a part of Emmaus?
Sarah: It is exciting to be able to say, with confidence and assurance, that Emmaus is where God wants us. After months of prayer and discernment we feel that God has clearly answered our “what next” prayer. It is a perfect intersection of our gifts: teaching, discipleship, worship, social marketing and engagement.
Kris: We are excited about the community, the students, and discovering what God has for us in this season of our lives. I believe the Spirit led us to Emmaus for a purpose and I am excited to be a part of whatever that looks like.
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