One morning early last spring during my devotion time, I felt like God was laying something on my heart he wanted me to do.
I could provide a boatload of excuses as to why I couldn’t possibly be the woman he was looking for. My answer could easily have gone something like this:
“Me? You want me? Are you sure about this? Really, God? Have you not seen my schedule lately? Have you not noticed the numerous appointments, commitments and activities that fill its pages, week after week, month after month? Surely, not me?”
Sometimes, I remind myself of Moses.
The more I prayed about it, however, the stronger I felt his direction and desire for me to be obedient to him concerning this.
So, for a few months, I continued to pray, asking God for the clarity and peace I believed I needed before I could act upon his request. I had to know beyond all my doubts that this was truly coming from him and not from any other source.
What was his request, you ask?
I believe, with all my heart, that I was being asked to bring together a group of professional and business women who were totally sold on following Christ. These would be women who, because of the unique demands of their work schedules, wouldn’t have a lot of extra time to spare between work, family and home responsibilities. These women wouldn’t normally have an opportunity to get together with other women to pray.
Throughout my years as a Christ follower, there have been plenty of times when I’ve needed and treasured Godly women to lift me and the circumstances I was in before the Lord in prayer.
At times I have felt like Satan was bombarding me with everything and everyone to defeat me as a Christ follower. I am sure you have gone through times like these as well if you have been following Christ very long.
By the month of July, it was time for me to start putting God’s plan into action. I had been praying all along for whom I was to ask to be a part of this first group. I wrote down the names of each woman whom I believed God was directing me to invite.
I didn’t know if any of them would want to join me, but this decision was not mine to make. It was between each woman and God. All I knew was that I was to ask.
It took the months of July and August for me to ask each woman and get her answer. By the end of August, eight women had decided to join me after each had spent a considerable amount of time in prayer seeking God’s direction for herself.
There were a few who said they didn’t feel it was in God’s timing at the present for them to be able to join me. But I was just so appreciative that each had taken seriously my request and had gone before the Lord and prayed about it.
After the number joining me was set, I spoke with some of the woman and decided that we would meet the first and third Wednesdays of the month in my office from noon to 1 p.m. beginning in September.
During the hour we now meet, the first few minutes are spent sharing prayer requests, praises and answers to prayers. Then, as we go around the room, we spend the remainder of the time, specifically, praying for each other about the concerns on our hearts.
After we have prayed for each one present, we pray for those who were unable to meet on that day. Since we each have work meetings from time to time, we can’t always be there. Usually the number that can come is between five and eight.
Week after week, we rejoice in God’s faithfulness to us. When Christ- following women gather to pray in his name, we see and experience his power through answered prayers for each other.
We also experience that special bond between women that can come only from the Holy Spirit.
One of the woman in my prayer group recently wrote the following note to me about what our prayer group means to her:
“God is so awesome and readily answers prayers. It reminds me of John 15:16: ‘… whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you.’
“Now, we know that doesn’t mean we get everything we ask for and that Jesus in the surrounding verses teaches us it’s about being in alignment and abiding in God’s will. But it tells me I need to remember to ask. This purposeful meeting of these women is to do just that.”
God’s last question for me when I was considering starting the prayer group was “What if not one person calls you about receiving more information? Would you still be willing to do all I’ve asked of you?”
My final answer was straight from Isaiah 6:8-9: “Here am I. Send me.”
Nita Evans of Columbus is owner of Confidential Christian Counseling, focusing her work especially with ministry leaders and their families. She also is a Columbus Police Department chaplain and a national retreat and conference speaker. She can be reached at 812-614-7838 or by visiting specialspeaker.com.