More than 400 women heard encouraging stories about what missionaries are doing around the world during the second Carolina Women event in October.
BR photo by Dianna L. Cagle
Leaders from North and South Carolina gather to pray before one of the Carolina Women sessions.
With 422 women present Oct. 6-7, the Woman’s Missionary Union (WMU) groups from North and South Carolina met at Fort Caswell on Oak Island. The women collected $4,046.31 to split between the two state WMU groups to support various ministries.
Women heard from Sandy Wisdom-Martin, executive director of national Woman’s Missionary Union, and Kimberly Sowell, a school teacher and author from South Carolina, during the main sessions. They also were encouraged to attend breakouts on a variety of topics, led by the main leaders as well as state WMU leaders.
Ashley Adams, minister of music and education at Hemingway First Baptist Church, led the music.
“God wants to use me … why?” Wisdom-Martin asks. “Maybe because I am so ordinary.”
She challenged the women to question the cost of serving God first. She asked what their obsessions are, asking about money, power, intellect, family, Facebook, etc.
“Some of us love serving the church or WMU more than we do the Master,” she said. “Any thing that comes between you and God is idolatry. What if we put as much passion into His mission as we do with those things that capture our time, our attention and our resources?”
She shared the story of a coordinator at a law office who took an 85 percent pay cut to work with Christian Women’s Job Corps.
“If you’re going to truly celebrate missions,” she said, “it will break your heart. It could seriously affect [your] time. It could greatly affect your finances. It could be dangerous. I guarantee you it is going to be messy.
“I will not offer the Lord my God burnt sacrifices that cost me nothing,” said Wisdom-Martin referring to King David in the Old Testament. “The sweet offering was pleasing to the Lord. How much sweeter the experience was because of all the hassle.
“What would happen in your life if you were released to go where God leads? I’m asking you to abandon yourself. Will you play it safe? Or will you refuse to move? Or will you fall unconditionally at the foot of the cross?
Wisdom-Martin shared six lessons she learned from meeting with a woman in ministry for 15 minutes.
- Be willing to do hard things.
- Never give up.
- Pour your life and your resources into the next generation.
- Don’t lose focus.
- Think creatively.
- Teach people to make disciples who make disciples.
What does the future hold for Christianity or missions involvement?
“The outlook isn’t good, but this isn’t our work,” she said, “it’s His. Pour your life and your resources into the next generation. Teach people to make disciples who make disciples.”
Sowell taught about the future King Saul looking for his donkeys.
“God does not set people up for failure,” Sowell said. “He equips us to be successful in whatever endeavor He calls us to.”
She mentioned Saul’s looks and his height, things people would naturally respect.
She expressed that each woman has potential with God. “God takes those things that are admirable and … also those things that are painful. God can use all of these things for His glory.”
Jesus had 12 disciples, Sowell stressed, indicating that God does not mean for people to serve in isolation.
“We have pictures in the scripture that teach us that when we look around and there’s nobody there, we need to pray, ‘God, am I where I need to be?’”
Saul was overtaken with fear, jealousy, pettiness, impatience and anger.
“It wasn’t good enough for God to be on time. He wanted God to be early,” she said. “He wanted all of the credit.”
She encouraged prayer to keep focus on God. “When the going gets tough, the tough get praying. The very first choice that we will make is the choice of what we will do with Jesus Christ.”
Phyllis Foy, a retired North American Mission Board (NAMB) missionary and former Baptist State Convention of North Carolina consultant on church renewal, shared her testimony of being raised in a broken home. It was a NAMB missionary that loved and encouraged her. “God does pick out some insignificant people,” she said, referring to herself.
Throughout her childhood, she was told she would never amount to anything and was threatened with reform school. “God provides for the insignificant,” she said. “God is good, and He picks the insignificant to do amazing things.”
Carolina Women will meet again in 2019. Carolina Girls meets on the even years. Check wmunc.org for more information.