By: Karla Hovde
Dean Roush has been a deeply engaged member of Taylors Falls UMC for most of his life. But it took him many years to fully embrace God’s calling on his life.
Roush is a husband, a father and grandfather, a sheep and beef farmer, and a high school math and physics teacher. Over the years, he has taught Sunday School, led Vacation Bible School, and spent three summers working at a Bible camp. He enjoyed sharing with young people the love and joy he found from accepting Christ as his Lord and Savior.
But it wasn’t until a few years ago when he was asked to lead a praise music worship service at his church that he began to hear God’s call to something bigger. For the past three-and-a-half years, Roush has led a monthly praise service at Taylor’s Falls UMC, and more recently, he agreed to lead worship services when his pastor is sick or on vacation.
Before Roush took on these roles, he felt a lingering sense that there was something God still needed him to accomplish.
“I felt something missing—something undone,” he said. “It wasn't until I actually began to listen to and ask for God’s guidance that I felt this void being filled,” he said. “This opportunity to present music and a scripture-based message—God was reaching out showing me the gift and talent he had given me, to allow God speak through my music and messages.”
Roush knows for certain that God is still not done with him and is continuing to challenge him in new ways.
Last year, Roush attended the ConneXion Retreat, an event for laity looking to find their calling in ministry. It was during this retreat, through discussion, reflection, and prayer, that God's mission for Roush became clear—he was needed to teach as a minister of God’s word. He is now on the path to becoming a licensed local pastor.
Going forward, Roush plans to support Taylors Falls UMC in every way he can—through his gifts, talents, and leadership. And if at some point he is called to lead another church, he will welcome that opportunity.
“When and if God has other plans for my teaching, I will address this with prayer and praise,” he said.
One of the ways Roush senses God working in his life is through the gifts God has given him to help him follow his call. “I believe God has given me the peace and compassion to listen—to listen to others' concerns and needs, to listen to the joys and sorrows, to listen to when God calls to make a difference,” he said. “A compassionate ear to not only listen but hear the needs of those in our church and community.”
As he thinks about the future, Roush is ready and eager to serve.
“I see God's miracles every day: in the sunrise, the wildlife which live throughout our land, the miracle of the birth of our animals, my family, and my faith,” Roush said. “I have been blessed for these many years and pray that I will have the opportunity to continue to share and teach God's messages which have been placed in my heart.”
Karla Hovde is the communications specialist for the Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church.
Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church