Encouraging Church Planters Wives in Phoenix
At the beginning of October I had the privilege to visit the Phoenix church plant, Mercy Hill. My goal in going to Phoenix was to encourage the lead planters but to especially encourage the women. These woman made a huge sacrifice to follow their husbands to a new area sometimes very much outside their comfort zone. Without the support of their wives walking alongside them these men would not be able to do what they are doing.
I was able to encourage Karla, lead planter Anthony Cox's wife, during the visit through sharing, praying, and walking alongside her in her daily activities. I enjoyed hearing her joys and struggles in planting and how to pray for her and Mercy Hill. She was able to join Gospel of God Ministries on the streets of downtown Phoenix for their First Friday event. This is a large street festival held the first Friday of each month. Karla had many great conversations with locals who heard the gospel through the preaching.
Saturday I hosted the core team wives for brunch at a local coffee shop. It was my desire to encourage these ladies in their service, give them time to spend with one another, and pray for them, just as 1 Thessalonians 5:11 says to do. “Therefore encourage one another and build up one another, just as you also are doing.” We had a great time getting to know each other and for them to be together while not serving in the church. The Open Door Church's Ladies Bible Study blessed the church planting ladies with money for the cost of the meal, homemade book marks and personal notes of encouragement. In addition, each lady received a care package which included the book, Women of the Word by Jen Wilkin, a journal, and pen. I am grateful for the time I was able to spend with Mercy Hill. I pray the ladies were encouraged. I know I was!
Friends, would you consider reaching out to a women of one of the church plants? Would your family consider taking a vacation to one of these churches to serve and encourage the church planters? I am reminded of Hebrews 3:13 which says “But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called “Today,” so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.”
Most importantly please be in prayer for the churches. Ladies pray for the wives; leaving your friends, home, and church is not easy but the Lords calling can make it possible.
“Now may the God who gives perseverance and encouragement grant you to be of the same mind with one another according to Christ Jesus.” Romans 15:5
If you are looking for a way to connect with the ladies of the churches you can get a list of the church plants and team members from the Pillar Network. You can also email Zach Nelson or Jenna DiPrima. You can start with a hand written card or email or Facebook message thanking them for their service and letting them know how you are praying for them. Your encouragement will go a long way and can open the door for a new friendship. In addition, if you are a church planters wife, pastors wife, or a woman involved in the Pillar Network, please mark your calendar for our women's retreat in Charleston on May 13-15. More details and registration will be available soon!