Thursday, June 23, 2016

Just a Little Band of Women

In so many places in this world, women are so marginalized and ostracized – simply because they are women. If only our world used the example of Jesus and how He loved and respected us. He really "upset the apple cart" in His culture in the way He related to women. In Luke 8 we see there was a band of women followers who traveled with Jesus and His 12 motley crew of men disciples as He ministered all around Galilee. Those women came from all walks of life, they were single, married, and some had questionable backgrounds, but here’s the common thread – each of them experienced healing through their encounter with Christ. He loved them, taught them and could have cared less about what the pious religious folk thought.

I know God loves us all – after all, He gave all of us His only Son who paid the ultimate price for our wrongs. But, personally, I am keenly aware of His love for us girls. A couple of Sundays ago, the Gospel reading in Luke 7 was read – it tells the story of the woman (Mary Magdalene) and her alabaster flask of ointment that she bathed Jesus feet with. Jesus’ reply to her when Simon Peter “ostracized” her was “Your sins which are many, are forgiven. Your faith has saved you; go in peace.” To Simon, Jesus gave a scolding about his lack-luster attitude. And here’s the best part of the story…..Mary Magdalene went on to be the first to see our risen Lord, and then become the first evangelist. I'd say "that's some kind of love"! How fitting that on July 22nd, Pope Francis will elevate and honor "Saint" Mary Magdalene to having a Feast Day named after her.....just like the other disciples. Sincerely, we, women, can stand up and stand tall, knowing we are so deeply and profoundly loved by God. We really do matter to Him.

The little bands of women that Jesus touched and loved is a mighty indicator of His love for us. The women at the foot of the cross and at the tomb held a tiny flame of faith that He would rise as He promised. That flame of faith may have burned high, and it may have burned low, but the flame never went out, and their faith was rewarded.

That’s how I feel about the little band of women who meet at my home every Tuesday night (for almost 3 years now) to celebrate that love that He has for us. Like the women of the Bible, our flame of faith may burn high and it may burn low, but our flame never goes out and because we have faith in His Word that “nothing is impossible with Him”, He rewards us. We have had many answers to prayer – healings, marriages restored, families restored, spiritual growth, emotional healings, being able to forgive, seeing children come to know Christ, and, even, the birth of babies…..like this little angel girl, Ragan. For months, we prayed for Ragan’s mommy and daddy and Ragan is the evidence of “Nothing is impossible with God.” Just a little band of women – who encourage each other, pray for each other, cry with each other and laugh with each other – but all of us – holding hands together as we walk out this journey of faith. Ragan's two grandmothers (pictured here) have stood strong for precious Ragan.

What BAND do you belong to? If you don’t have a group that lifts you higher, that is willing to run to the finish line with you, that encourages you to go the distance, that makes you better and gives you a good kick-in-the-place-you-sit-on every now and again, I urge you to find a BAND too. Being a little band of women or men….can certainly keep you going….especially when the going gets tough. By the way, my little band of women....can sure ROCK OUT....after all our faith is built on THE ROCK!
#BandOfWomen #RockStars #NoLimitsLifeGroup #GodLovesUs