“For thus says the One who is high and lifted up, who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy: ‘I dwell in the high and holy place, and also with him who is of a contrite and lowly spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly, and to revive the heart of the contrite.”Isaiah 57:15
Just a little over a week ago we returned from our Women in the Window training with Lakota Sioux Native American women. These women embody this Scriptural truth that the One who inhabits eternity makes Himself at home only in humble and contrite hearts. They have experienced much pain and shame with the startling reality that nearly 80% are unemployed; 90% of all girls experience sexual abuse by the age of 18, and 100% of their families are impacted by alcohol and drug abuse. Yet, in spite of this, or perhaps because of it, their hearts are open to the power and love of Jesus Christ.
We were deeply enriched by our time with them, and richly blessed to receive these comments from our Lakota Sioux sisters in Christ regarding the Women in the Window training and what they enjoyed:
- The care and comfort of the leaders who taught us, feeling welcomed, laughter and fun. The atmosphere was warm and not intimidating. We were free to be ourselves.
- Deborah and women in the Bible, lots of good info, spiritual gifts inventory, you ladies really listened to us.
- Learning about Deborah and that she is a women warrior who is not afraid to speak or do anything.
- Good organization and creative teaching, I especially liked the inductive bible study.
- I enjoyed watching each woman walk out her spiritual gifts in front of others so they could see what God can do! We were truly equipped and empowered to be who God wants us to be!
Your prayers were felt and each specific prayer request was answered with very specific answers.
Our scripture was like prophecy, “You will have courage because you will have hope.” (Job 11:18) Because of Jesus and the hope we have in Him we were able to share courage inviting the Lakota women to become “Deborah’s.” (Our WiW inductive Bible study for the week covered her life and leadership). Courage to become leaders for Christ in a culture where they will most certainly be rejected for choosing to follow Him! Courage to face the many struggles by standing in Jesus and using their giftings! (We taught them on spiritual gifts and had a wonderful time with skits, stories and creative expression of their gifts). Courage to take the lead by coming together to pray. And God gave us a deeper love for the Lakota, their culture and their struggles by hearing their stories, seeing more in our travels to the site of the Wounded Knee Massacre, Pine Ridge Reservation and experiencing an authentic Native American Pow Wow. We were also strengthened as our team drew together with a sweet sense of unity in spite of very real challenges. We left more committed to Christ and one another than when we arrived.
We taught the women principles of leadership and provided a “space” for them to develop their own vision for women’s ministry on the reservation. They came together to launch their ministry with an event that provided an outreach into their community, an evening meal of delicious homemade pizza, and then a time of fervent effectual prayer, asking for our protection and God’s favor over us all. Some of the women who led this prayer time had never prayed out loud before. They are now growing in confidence, yes, even in courage! Why? Because they now have hope that they can make a difference!
Thank you for your prayers! Please visit our Facebook page to see more photos and leave a comment letting us know how we can pray for you! Yes, together, we will have courage because we have hope!