God is so amazing when we allow Him to do His work in us. I was a missionary serving in Ukraine for seven years. I had planned on continuing that ministry, but God had a different plan. He brought me back to the States before I was ready. It was a very sad time for me. I missed the people most of all, but I also missed having a God serving purpose for my life. So I began to pray that He would reveal to me a new ministry in America. Three years later He directed me to Teen Challenge through Debbie Brune, a Teen Challenge Board Member.
Since then, I have been lavishly blessed by Him, serving at the Alpha Henson Women’s Center, to be using my training as a Marriage Family Therapist, as well as my gift of teaching, to Biblically counsel the women at the center. God has given me a deep desire to serve these women, who are all struggling, often with multiple life controlling issues. When they come to see me, it is a place to ask questions, discuss new issues that God is revealing, confront behaviors that are no longer working, try out strategies for new ways of thinking and behaving and receiving encouragement for new fruit that God is producing. They feel built up and challenged after one of these sessions.
One woman who had seriously been working on relationship issues, was recently moved to the yard crew. She loved being outside and had time to pray and ask God for direction. She had been asking Him to give her a ‘sign’ on a particular issue and felt moved to ask to see a frog in the yard. The very next day, God showed her a whole family of frogs. When she shared this with me, I told her that FROG is a Christian acronym for “Faithfully Relying On God”. She was ecstatic.
Experiences like this are what keep me motivated and serving because I am seeing God at work and spiritual growth in the women. I am convinced that when we give of our time and gifts to others, God gives back to us in ten-fold blessings.