Wednesday, March 6, 2013

When God Takes your Yes and Turns it into a Community

Yesterday, I wrapped up my 8-week Bible Study that I wrote and have been teaching on Tuesday mornings called Road Signs.  I selfishly asked the Women's Ministry at our church if I could lead this study as a way to force myself to finally write out the words and messages that have been in my head and heart for over 3 years.  If I'm honest, I was hoping to connect and share with women, but mostly I was stepping out with a personal motive - looking for a catalyst to light a fire under my tush so that I could say Yes to the Lord and remove the gnawing pressure that seemed to always hang above my head.

I was told that typical morning studies usually bring 20 ladies and that by the end of a study there are around 12 who remain and walk across the finish line.  Now, I'm no Beth Moore so I was praying and expecting 10 or so women to show up, and I selfishly hoped that half of those 10 would finish just so I could gauge whether or not what I had to share was valid.

So, 8 weeks ago I walked into that classroom with a lighter heart - because I had finally said yes, but guarded expectations not wanting to hope for too much.  I had to blink my eyes several times on that first morning as almost 50 ladies sat in that room expectant and ready for what this study would bring.  I remember holding back tears as I opened that first morning in prayer - realizing in my heart that perhaps God was up to something...

8 weeks later as I surveyed the room yesterday, it was crystal clear that God had much more in store for those Tuesday mornings than just a platform for me to try out some material.  You see, over the last 8 weeks we've had over 75 women walk through the doors and slowly open their hearts.  EVERY week I have watched as women have not just taken notes on what I had to share, but also stepped out in vulnerability to share their own stories and minister to one another.

Yesterday I sat in awe as I watched women in their 60's loving on young mothers.  I watched as women of every race cried together and opened the Word together and prophesied life and truth over one another's lives.  Yesterday, I watched as 4 women who now take on the roles of grandmother provided lunch for over 30 women who could stay afterwards to eat...they provided not because I asked but because they have connected and want to pour out their wisdom...and listening ears...and love on those younger. 

I ate lasagna and the most divine homemade coconut cake as kids played and mothers talked and grandmothers held babies and women shared their stories...and I realized - THIS - this is what God was up to...

I came with my feeble words and a desire simply to say yes to Him...and as I I brought my loaves and fish...God had taken my obedience - my offering - and had multiplied it far beyond what I could have ever imagined.  He took my gift and multiplied it into a community - a community of women who were learning to love one another.  

And now we were breaking bread and deciding we shouldn't stop meeting...because although it started as a catalyst to get my words out...God created a safe place where their words mattered too.

Road Signs is finished (I'll be teaching it again starting April 24th in the evening - lots of Lubbock ladies were upset it was just in the morning)...but Tuesday mornings are not finished - we are taking March off but will resume meeting in April - allowing our community to continue to flourish and inviting God to multiply and transform as only He can do.

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