Dana grew up in Mobile, Alabama and experienced a call to “full-time Christian service” at the age of 16. After high school, Dana attended the University of Mobile where she studied Religious Education and Communications. Upon earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Religious Education she went on to Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary where she earned a Master’s Degree in Religious Education. Dana has 16 years experience serving in ministry in church staff positions in Alabama, Texas, and Georgia. Dana received training from Grace Ministries International and FBC Atlanta Counseling Ministry to prepare for her work with New Life Design. Dana resigned her position of Minister with Single Adults & Discipleship Ministries with FBC Powder Springs in July 2007 to begin New Life Design Ministries. Dana lives in Metro Atlanta with her husband, Tony, and their son, Nathanael.
In 2003, God planted a dream in my heart – a dream of a grace-discipleship Counseling/Life Coaching Ministry in this area. God planted the dream, and then He said,
“Wait on it”.
As I waited, God developed the vision and fine tuned the plan. He began strategically placing Tony and me in a unique position for us to begin such a ministry. In the winter and early spring of 2007, the LORD began to deal very heavily with me about this issue and the faith needed to follow Him. Through a unique experience on March 11, 2007, I totally surrendered and abandoned myself to Father and said,
“Yes, I’m ready”.
The work that God had done in my life in the 9 years preceding that incident played a very key role in me beginning New Life Design, Inc. Around 1998, I reached a point of total and complete frustration. The frustration I felt in ministry only exacerbated the frustration I felt in my personal life and in my relationship with the LORD.
God was silent and my frustration level grew. It seemed that the more the questions mounted the less likely it would be that I would find answers. Nothing seemed to work, and I felt blocked in every direction from experiencing what I would have deemed as success in ministry and life. The way I sought out an answer for this was working harder in ministry and in my own spiritual life. I also tried to seek out some kind of solace in friendships. It was all short lived as God was taking me through a process of coming to the end of myself. It was at that place that God began transforming my life with the message of the Exchanged Life.
“What is this message?”
you may ask. The term “exchanged life” is directly related to the believer’s discovery of a new identity in Christ. The believer is a new creation; one born of God. Missionary J. Hudson Taylor made the English term “exchanged life” popular through his testimony of how God made him a new man. We also see that Isaiah 40:31 says,
“But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles…”
Many theologians tell us that the literal translation of the Hebrew word for “renew” is actually “exchange,” meaning those who wait on the LORD will “exchange their strength for His strength”. Now, not only am I a new creation, but I have exchanged my old life for His life, my power for His power and my purposes for His purpose. It is when I began to really process these truths that I accepted by faith who God said I was in Christ and realized the rich inheritance I had in Christ. I now had a new way of living and a new power and purpose for living as well.
I have found that many people, even those who “grew up in church,” as we say, are struggling to find identity, purpose, and power to grasp the victorious Christian life that the Bible tells us we are supposed to be experiencing. They live in defeat day after day – with no hope of life ever being any different. Many have struggled with dysfunctional behaviors that they can’t seem to correct no matter how hard they try. Others suffer in relationships that just don’t seem to work.
At New Life Design we believe that Jesus is the true answer and that through the Life Coaching process an individual can come to a place of knowing how to appropriate Christ as their life and begin to experience peace, victory, purpose and power for living.