Nicole Rivas, M.Div, J.D
Director of Spiritual Care
Board Certified Christian Counselor
Some time ago I ran into an old friend, who I had always known to be an atheist. To my surprise and delight, she had somewhere along the way found faith. I was happy and excited for her, but most of all I was curious as to how faith had changed her life. Her answer to me was simple: her life was not perfect, nor did she expect it to be, but now she woke up every morning with the assurance that she was never alone. This simple and uncomplicated profession of faith gave her all the peace, strength, and courage she needed not only to survive but to thrive through life’s challenges.
I walked away from that encounter with two transformational insights that shape my approach to spiritual growth: (1) faith does not have to be complicated to be effective, and (2) there is power in simply knowing you are not alone. With this in mind, my goal is always to demystify and uncomplicate faith, to make it practical and relevant to everyday life. I am also committed to the power of community because it reminds us in a very real and tangible way that we are never alone. Not only is God with us, but we are with and for each other.
Before answering the call to ministry, I received my undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Southern California. Several years later, I returned to school to complete a Master of Divinity degree at Fuller Theological Seminary. In between law school and seminary, I practiced employment law for more than 20 years. I bring this experience with me to ministry. I am a minister at heart, of course. But I still have all the frankness and directness of a lawyer (which I admit sometimes gets me in trouble). If, however, you are willing to extend to me a little grace, I would be honored to accompany you along your spiritual journey wherever it may lead you.