This is the final week of our study, and Peter finishes his epistle with strength and conviction. Urging his readers to remain steadfast in their faith and in the truth of God’s Word, based on what God has done for us in Christ, he begins this final section with a “therefore.” This reminds us to look back and consider the context of what he has already written to understand what he is writing here at the end. Continue reading →
Last week our Women’s Ministry Team met to reflect and share notes on our recent women’s conference, Compassionate Community, with Susan Hunt. The focus of the conference was Biblical Womanhood, as expressed in Titus 2 Spiritual Mothering relationships. As one, we all agree that Susan’s message to us was not only precisely what the local church, but also the Church as a whole desperately needs to hear. We were overwhelmed by the positive response to the conference—and by positive response, I mean women who were starving for this message were brought to feast on the bread of God’s Word and they left nourished, but hungry for more!
The following is the talk given by Jana to open our meeting, based on her own reflections on the conference as they corresponded with her devotional reading in John’s Gospel. We are all excited to see what the Lord will do not only in our own women’s ministry, but in the ministries and churches represented at the conference. May we be willing vessels, believing his promises and carrying out the works for which he has prepared us, firm in our faith, with humility and love for one another. ~Barbaranne Kelly
On any given day, if I don’t think about it too much, I’m rather content. Now, Scripture calls us to contentment, but that’s not what I’m talking about here. Most days I’m content to simply be average: averagely comfortable, moderately productive, and conveniently involved in the lives of others. I will see what’s happening among others in my church community or ‘out there’ in the world and I can get energized or upset by current events, but only until it pushes me against my comfort zone, and then—that’s quite enough already; simmer down; back to average comfort. After all, I’m an introvert. A low-energy introvert. Don’t even talk about looking inward. This is how God made me. Leave me alone—I mean, I’m fine. Continue reading →
After discussing Chapter 7 on Community, I wrote about the golden chain that I see being woven as we learn about the biblical themes and principles that shape women’s ministry. This past week, we discussed Discipleship, and I could not help but see the beauty of the golden chain continuing to weave through the biblical call for older women to disciple younger women in the church. Susan shows us a lovely example of this from the gospel of Luke. (Note: My paraphrase of Susan’s account was given in the Tuesday lesson. I polished it up here for you as requested. The words below are 90% Scripture and Susan, and 10% me.) Continue reading →
My husband and I have moved our family and household several times—from Germany to Pennsylvania to Florida, back to Pennsylvania, and now to Texas— with the number of our possessions growing or whittling according to the situation. We not only carry about our own belongings, but family heirlooms passed down from previous generations. Facing an imminently empty nest, the thought of which of our treasures we will bequeath to which of our children when we downsize further arises occasionally (usually while de-cluttering a closet or attempting to finally clean the garage). Continue reading →
Sisters, it was wonderful to get back together this Tuesday and renew our discussion of this excellent little book called Women’s Ministry in the Local Church!
It’s usually not a good idea to take a month’s break during the middle of a study. You wonder—will anyone come back, have they moved on to something else, has the momentum been lost? But, praise be to God, that was not the case! Our discussion was rich with enthusiasm, the eyes of our hearts were being enlightened to the beauty of a women’s ministry undergirded by the core foundational truths of gospel, truth, sound doctrine, discipleship, and covenant being worked out through the principles of submission, compassion and community. Stories were shared, the budding of ideas for ways to minister were popping up around the room; you could almost see the Lord working in the hearts of women gathered in the room at 10 and 6 that day! Continue reading →
I spent last weekend in a place I’ve never been, with a great big group of people, most of whom I’ve never met. My husband and I drove for two days from South/Central Texas to the Middle-of-Nowhere, Wisconsin for a delayed celebration in honor of our youngest daughter’s marriage. A little over a year ago, Erin and Dusty were married in a sweet little wedding chapel in Memphis with only his parents, a couple of siblings, and us to share their day. And yet they each have families and friends with whom they wanted to share their joy, so a great gathering was planned for this summer at Dusty’s Grandparents’ farm. Continue reading →