I am often inspired and challenged by the women around me – women who could make a list of all the reasons they should sit back and let others take the next risk.
Recently I was remembering the day my mom passed away. Later that same evening, I was out with my father and step-mother. I saw a friend from a distance and he waved. A few minutes later he was within reach, with his son by his side. He was visibly uncomfortable. He didn’t know what to say, considering it was my mother who had passed away, and I was with my father and his wife. I don’t remember exactly what he ended up saying, but I’ll never forget his actions. He loved enough to willingly endure his own uncomfortable feelings and even to look bad in front of his son, in order to show that he cared for me. Love triumphed.
I’ve been watching some friends lately endure their own uncomfortable feelings in order to show love to others. They step out when they don’t feel like going. They make a choice to give of themselves even when they could make a list of all the reasons why they shouldn’t or don’t need to go. In the end, they choose to go because they want to show the love of God in their actions. They go to prisons. They go to seniors’ homes. They take a risk and help a friend to discover what the Christian life is really all about. Love triumphs.
In John 15:9-14, Jesus said:
“I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow. This is my commandment. Love each other in the same way I have loved you. There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command.”
Love costs, but love triumphs.
Father, you love me. You have shown it over and over in my life, but ultimately in Jesus’ sacrifice of his life for mine. Remaining in your love, empower me to love others as you command. May your joy in me overflow. Show me, Lord, where today I can lay down my own life (comforts and feelings) in order to show love to others. In Jesus’ name, amen!
If we are going to reach the world in our generation, we need to be intentional about reaching out together with His love. Connecting Streams invites women on a shared faith adventure, equipping and mobilizing them to reach their world for Christ. Begin your adventure today.
~ Donna Mitchell, Director, Connecting Streams Women’s Ministry
Quote of the Month:
“God, I am willing to change in whatever way You prescribe, to become the person You want me to be, so that more people can hear the gospel sooner.” ~ Bill Hybels
Your View of Life, by Cath Thorlakson
Read Genesis 45
“So now it was not you who sent me here, but God; and He has made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house and ruler over all the land of Egypt.” (Gen. 45:8)
There is nothing that enters your life that God did not plan. Do you believe that?
When I read Joseph’s story, I am so struck by God’s power. Has there ever been a more dramatic rise to power? Can you imagine when Joseph – straight from the dungeon – had royal robes put on him, officials going before him telling people to bow the knee, and a wife given to him … after 13 years of hard things? It is pretty hard to hear that story and deny the power of God. Read more….
Faith Adventure Story: From Pudding Mix to Africa, by Erin Doherty
“It was less than a week before I was to leave for the mission field, for what would turn out to be two years onboard a Mercy Ship off the coast of West Africa.
Though I knew this was what I was supposed to be doing, and though God had opened door after door to get me to this place, I was still having second thoughts. 9/11 had occurred only days earlier, and I was a single woman in my mid-twenties. What could I possibly be thinking?! Was the world even a safe place to travel anymore? Was it wise to leave behind all I knew as safe and familiar, to head off into an as yet undefined adventure? It would be just me and God, facing the unknown. I knew no one else where I was going.
As these thoughts churned through my mind, my soul in a bit of turmoil, I began preparing a sticky but delicious recipe called friendship bread, a concoction of 14 ingredients. Never one to remember to check if I have all the ingredients on hand before proceeding with a recipe, I absent-mindedly poured and mixed, measured and spooned. Inwardly, I was having a spirited conversation with God.” Read more….
Thank you for reading the first edition of our revamped newsletter! We trust you were inspired, blessed, and uplifted in your faith walk. Please forward this to friends or contacts whom you think it would bless. They can subscribe through our website at www.connectingstreams.com.