Being a minister can be a cold and isolating experience…even for the most seasoned worker. When that ministry occurs on foreign soil, the stress only multiplies.
Paul experienced winter. On the field in the first century, Paul writes to his friend Timothy: “Do your utmost to come before winter” (NKJV, 2 Timothy 4.9). Paul is grieving the loss of fellow workers, one who has deserted the work. “Only Luke is with me,” he writes. Alone and in prison, Paul craves encouragement and the presence of friends and familiar, useful items:
“Bring the cloak I left in Troas, and my scrolls, especially the parchment,” he urges.
Today’s women in ministry can experience winter. Though Paul spoke of the physical season, winter can mean more than cold winds and dead leaves. The symbol can represent any period regarded as a time of decline, dreariness, or adversity.
Ministry, especially ministry in missions, challenges the hearts and souls of women around the world. Today, just as in the first century, some workers will leave the work, tired and discouraged. Those who remain will on some days long for a familiar face, a conversation with a kindred spirit, tools with which to work, and the comforts of “home.”
Our goal is to bring what is lacking and to arrive before “winter.”
Giving glory to God, we will encourage women in ministry by:
- Equipping them with advanced Bible study skills
- Honoring them for their efforts and sacrifices
- Providing opportunities to discuss their own struggles and needs
- Reinforcing their value as vital assets of the body of Christ locally, nationally, and worldwide
- Promoting unity among women in ministry around the world
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