Johnny Israel Milton

Where did you grow up?

I was born and brought up in Chennai, South India.

What did life look like before NTC?

I was born to Christian parents who serve God in Chennai, South India even today. My dad planted a church in quite a hostile neighbourhood where Christians were not welcome. Growing up in this environment was tough but through the grace of God we survived and thrived. Through threats and danger to our lives, God’s protection and provision carried us through every day. I love music and enjoyed being a session drummer and played with various bands. I also enjoyed riding my motorcycle. When I was doing my MA in English at Madras University I did not have a clue where my life was heading. While I was thinking and praying about all this, family and friends of mine got me considering the possibility of doing a diploma course in theology in England. Although, I wasn’t convinced at first, after seeking God’s direction, I felt it was the right thing to do. I thoroughly enjoyed the course and upon completion, went back to India. Within a few short months God opened doors for me to continue my education at Nazarene Theological College on the Theology: Youth Work and Ministry course, while getting practical training and serving a Church in Manchester.

When did you come to NTC? What year did you graduate?

I came to NTC in September 2003 and graduated in October 2009. There was a delay as it took a while to pay off my tuition fees 🙂

What did you enjoy/learn at College? How did this change/shape you?

I absolutely enjoyed NTC. No regrets at all. I must admit it was hard work but it was a small price to pay for amazing experiences and wonderful people I got to know. The course and experiences along the way has shaped me to be more reliant on God. The more I experience life, the more I realise how much insecure and momentary things are around us. I’m convinced that I need more of God in my life now than ever before.

What happened after you graduated?

Through the grace of God I got offered a job soon after I graduated. I thoroughly enjoyed my first full-time employment. It was a time God allowed to deepen my relationship with Him, widening my experiences, working with people of varied backgrounds, learning responsibility and tackling challenges along the way. It was a time of practical application of what was learned and assuming positions of leadership and mentoring and learning to depend on God for every single thing. It was a journey that opened my eyes in many ways, build and grow me very quickly both personally and professionally.

Where are you now and what are you doing?

I’m serving a Church in Newcastle under Lyme as a ‘Youth Outreach worker.’

How are you living out your faith in you job?

Being actively involved in various activities within our community, visiting 2-3 schools a week to hold Assemblies, running different youth clubs during the week and being involved in Church activities on Sunday takes a lot of time and effort. I realise that just doing these things does not automatically make one close to God. It has been a constant challenge to keep my personal relationship with Jesus in check. By God’s grace I have been instrumental in leading many to the Lord and to positively affect and influence young people in their Christian journey.

Anything else you’d like to share?

I thank God for his mercy and love surrounding me for the past 15 years here in England. Serving God and people was an immense opportunity. I must add there has been lots of grating, grinding and tinkering along the way. God has been faithful to his promises and has kept me under his wings through hurts, regrets, pain, anxieties and uncertainties. I have met some wonderful people along the way who have shown me genuine love and care. Through ups and downs, happiness and sorrow, excellence and failures, God’s love has been a beacon of hope, guidance and strength.