Friend and women’s ministry leader Debbie Stuart, Women’s Ministry Director, Prestonwood Baptist Church was just with us at YOU Lead Colorado Springs. As you read her thoughts and reactions to the fire-y conditions, I pray you will be encouraged to walk on in faith no matter what’s up in your life or ministry right now!
I’ve just returned from a LifeWay YOU Lead training event in Colorado Springs, and it was entirely awesome! Leaders were passionate about ministry and eager for new ideas and fresh approaches to reaching women. And the Lord did not disappoint with His presence and personal attention to us! However, there was one sad thing…the major wildfires fires burning just a few miles from the conference. No one really knows what sparked a blaze that has covered almost 18,000 acres.
As I stood at the window looking at the mountains and the smoke, the Lord spoke these words in my heart…"in certain conditions fire will spread like crazy". Immediately I knew he wasn’t talking about the Colorado fire…he was talking about what lights my fire. I am crazy about the Lord and I’m most certainly passionate about Women’s Ministry but lately I have been in a time of "sifting" which I’m realizing has affected "my conditions". The Good News isn’t spreading like it should and fires of passion seem like embers at times. (Can anybody relate?)
Interesting word – SIFTED. From Luke 22:31 it means: inward agitation to try one’s faith to the verge of overthrow.
Let that settle on your heart for a moment…
The Bible says in this passage (speaking of Peter) that Satan has asked to sift you like wheat but the Lord has prayed for you that your faith may not fail and when you have turned again, strengthen your brother. Perhaps you are being sifted…in ministry, family, relationships, financially, medically. I’m learning that sifting can set you up for strengthening. It’s the perfect condition for the Lord to move like wildfire!
Galatians 5:7 says, "You were running so well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth?" Another translation says, "who has hindered your progress?" Let sifting set the right conditions and not hinder your progress.
What are the current "conditions" in your life? Have you set up the perfect conditions for the Lord to move like crazy? He’s looking for leaders to take on the challenging days of ministry, be effective in reaching women and be serious in prayers. This is our watch! We cannot allow the enemy to take any more ground!
Let’s take back what he has stolen from us and be diligent with women to:
· Champion Their Faith
· Speak Truth Into Their Lives
· Spread God’s Word like Wildfire
May a fresh whirlwind of the Holy Spirit cause embers to blaze again!
Debbie Stuart is Women’s Ministry Director, Prestonwood Baptist Church in Plano, TX and a LifeWay Ministry Multiplier. She earned her Women’s Ministry Advanced Certificate from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and is a member of the Association of Women’s Ministry Professionals . In addition to being a conference and retreat speaker and Bible study teacher, she was the founder and director of Network Extravaganza in the Shreveport, Louisiana area. She is married and has two young adults.
*Photo from the U.S. Airforce