By Kara Kemp
A note from Chris Adams: Today’s article is written by Kara Kemp, who has been assisting me and Mary Margaret Collingsworth in our work as a women’s ministry training intern this summer. We will miss her so when she leaves to go back home in August. She shows us a depth of thinking in this perspective of our mission. I’d say she is wise beyond her years!
It seems that I would’ve learned by now that God always has new truths to teach me from His Word. Yet for some reason, I still skim through the beginning of Genesis with little expectation. I mean, I already know about creation. I know about the fall. Let’s just get to the part about Jesus … about the glorious redemption and restoration that we find in His sacrifice.
Being faithful as always, God revealed to me that a key part of restoration is found in the opening chapters of Genesis. In the beginning, there was no need for restoration. Everything was, good! This word, good, means excellent, valuable, and right. I encourage you to dwell on the way things were created to be, the way people were created to be.
Along with daydreaming about the Garden of Eden, we must remember the mission that we have been entrusted with because of the Fall. In 2 Corinthians 5:18, Paul says that God reconciled us to Himself and then gave us the ministry of reconciliation (aka the ministry of bringing people back into harmony with Him). By the power of the Holy Spirit, we are to be committed to the process of making things and people good, excellent, valuable, and right. This, my friends, is the sweet spot of the Christian life and especially for women in leadership.
So what does this mean? Where do we start? How can we, as women’s ministry leaders, become ministers of reconciliation in our churches, to the women we serve, and in our homes?
1. Pray that God would help you see people the way He sees them.
One of the most effective prayers I have learned is this one: “Lord, give me your eyes to see the people around me.” It is amazing how my motivation to serve is heightened when I begin to see people for who God created them to be and not for the mistakes they may have made.
2. Keep your eyes on “the real thing.”
Most people have heard the way to detect counterfeit money is to spend time studying legitimate bills. Instead of becoming overwhelmed by the sin that so often seems to surround us, we must keep our eyes on “the real thing.” Hebrews 12:1-2 says that we need to live our lives by “keeping our eyes on Jesus, the source and perfecter of our faith …” The crucial truth that needs to be communicated to the women we serve is simply that salvation, initial and continual, is found in Christ alone.
3. Enjoy something beautiful.
Spend time enjoying the beauty of God’s grace. For me, that means going for a run through a forest or by a lake. For you that may mean tending to your garden, having coffee with a friend, or putting together a cute outfit! This kind of experience can even be shared in a small or large group in your women’s ministry. I believe God gives us hope by allowing us to see glimpses of goodness. Praise Him because we know that these little joys are not only glimpses of the past but previews of what is to come!
Kara Kemp is the women’s ministry training intern at LifeWay Christian Resources in Nashville, Tenn. This summer she is assisting Chris Adams and Mary Margaret Collingsworth prepare for events, such as YOU Lead and the Women’s Leadership Forum. Kara has completed her bachelor of arts in biblical studies at Dallas Baptist University, and now teaches Bible and coaches volleyball at the high school level. She enjoys coffee, running, and traveling to new places.