Jillian Smith

Worship Ministry Assistant

Life Story

I grew up in a loving, church-going home in Garland, TX. I was ten years old when I was saved, but I quickly traded salvation by grace for a life of works-based religion. In high school I developed a reputation as a “good Christian girl,” and as much as I chased Christ, I chased that reputation as well. I was convinced that if I did what the Bible said, I would earn God’s approval and that He’d keep me from suffering or pain. I began to show sure signs of anxiety and depression as I failed to reach impossible expectations, and after graduation, I struggled to find my identity in Him.

During my first few years at A&M, the Sovereign Lord began to break me of my legalism using various sermons, a Beth Moore bible study, a grace-filled friend and some verses in Isaiah: “He has clothed me with the garments of salvation; he has covered me with the robe of righteousness.” He showed me that Christ’s righteousness was part of the bargain - that He loved me as I was, no matter what I did or didn’t do.

I started visiting The Village in 2003 with David (now my husband) until 2006, when I moved back to Dallas and became a covenant member. That year, the Lord allowed a series of family hardships and a bitter first year of teaching to break me further. It was clear that good behavior didn’t exempt me from affliction, and essentially I pouted for about a year and half. I gave into sins I’d considered myself incapable of and tried to avoid his conviction, but He never let me go. He taught me about His sovereignty, His patience, and His relentless love for me. David and I married in 2007, after which we quickly joined a home group and began serving together.

After I was married, God walked me through 2 ½ years of working in the corporate world (something I swore I would never do), followed by a 6-month stretch of unemployment. By His grace, for the first time in my life, I actually trusted Him and His will – even though I didn’t understand it. He lovingly humbled me and purged my heart of various forms of idolatry. Throughout both of these seasons I asked Him about working at the church, and in April of 2011, He said, “yes.” He continues to grow and sanctify me season by season, and for that, I am so grateful. He is faithful even when I’m not, and He is always, always good.

Hope for The Village Church

My hope for The Village Church is that we would honor and glorify God as we grow deeply in genuine community and worship Him passionately.