Spring is in full bloom and in May we celebrate the National Day of Prayer, so this month our theme is “Just Be Prayerful.”
We are commanded in 1 Thessalonians 5:17 to pray continually.
Included in this month’s newsletter is a Bible reading plan that looks at prayers throughout the Bible, as well as a information about National Day of Prayer, and ideas to use your phone as a way to prompt you to pray.
Corrie ten Boom wrote this about prayer: “Is prayer your steering wheel or your spare tire?” Do you use prayer daily to guide your life or just occasionally when your life goes flat?
Need more inspiration about prayer. Captain Rutendo Masango, corps officer of the Pasadena Tabernacle Corps in the California South Division, recently wrote a great article, “Intentional Prayer” located on NHQ’s WM website. In her article she includes some great ideas of how to spend time with God in prayer. Check out her article: https://wmresources.org/blog/intentional-prayer/
Don’t forget to download this month’s issue of the Inspire Newsletter
Need previous issues of the INSPIRE Newsletter? They can be found at the following links: April 2021, March 2021, February 2021, January 2021 December 2020, November 2020, October 2020, September 2020, August 2020, July 2020, June 2020, May 2020, April 2020, March 2020, February 2020, January 2020, December 2019, November 2019, October 2019, October 2018-September 2019
By Major Ronda Gilger
Coeur d’Alene Kroc Center, ID – Northwest Division
Learn a simple technique with so many applications.
We’ve added everything you need to make sure that your group has a wonderful experience as they work together around the tables. Truly, some of the best ministry moments are experienced as women share their stories as they create these simple paper roses. And you will be so inspired as you look through the presentation and see how many applications there are for this lovely paper rose.
Will you create a masterpiece for your walls, or scatter them around a table? Perhaps just a few set inside and around the saucer of your teacup. Imagine events with these inspired decorations, wreaths, or something as practical as cards, tags or package décor.
This is a craft that can be taught across genders and generations, with relatively low cost which makes this internationally attractive as well. Share-far and wide!
What you’ll need:
- paper (scrapbook paper is good, cardstock has a nice weight-or use a page from a novel, a songbook or ??? so many options!),
- and a hot glue gun.
In the Video Tutorial you will hear a variety of ideas for Women’s Ministries, as well as tips for leading this craft.
For any of your women who may be home bound- this might also be a perfect way to share a link with them which they can follow along doing the same craft project as your other women.
Download the 2 page (2 sided) Tutorial handbook which can be printed for each woman in your group.
By Major Ronda Gilger
Coeur d’Alene Kroc Center, ID – Northwest Division
Note: This is a devotional that incorporates a time of prayer and a craft.
The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. Psalm 145:18
If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! Matthew 7:11
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit speaks on our behalf with groans that words cannot express. Romans 8:26
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your prayer requests before God. Philippians 4:6
Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. Colossians 4:2
I want men (and women) everywhere to lift up holy hands in prayer, without anger or disputing. I Timothy 2:8
Believing that the world can be changed with prayer, and understanding that our prayers carry the full intent of our hearts and minds to the throne of God… we choose to pray. We choose to move in close – to our Father….to sit in his presence and practice the spiritual discipline of prayer through an “activity” that will unite and focus us.
There are two options for the Prayer Flag Project:
1) The prayer flag banner can be made individually as a “take home” which may become a part of each person’s ongoing prayer life.
2) The prayer flag banner can be made to hang as a larger banner- in your chapel or entryway, a worship center or group room. As each person comes in they are invited to take part and the project is ongoing for a month or several weeks until the banner is filled with “prayers. You may have a journal there where people can write their prayer requests if they want others to join them.
The simplest directions are included on the handout which can be printed to give to all those participating.
Setting the Scene: Play worship music to create an atmosphere conducive to prayer.
Set up a “materials” table. Twine can be precut and placed at each participant’s seat. Strips of fabric can be precut or torn and placed in a few baskets where the women can choose the fabric they choose to add to their Prayer Flag.
Read each verse about prayer. Ask your women to share a time in their lives when God answered prayer. They may share as a group or as a united group. Encourage your women to keep a Prayer Journal- so they can see the ways in which God is working in their lives. “How He is answering their prayers!” You might even give each woman a small journal or moleskin and ask her to write down some of the prayers that she had as she created her Prayer Flag.
Close your time together in prayer for one another.
1. Measure & mark 1-1.5” inch sections along edge of fabric using ruler.
Snip the edge at the marking” cutting 1/2” in from edge.
2. Tear fabric strips to get a rough, straight edge.
Cut strips to 15 “ (1”x 15”) or (1.5 x 15”)
3. Tie your fabric strip around the twine and Knot with a simple half knot in the center of the strip. *Use a fairly Sturdy Hemp twine measuring 36-40”( or longer if a group project)
4. Tie a small slip knot at each end so that it can be hung.
5. With each “knotted fabric strip” a “prayer has been added.
By Major Ronda Gilger
Coeur d’Alene Kroc Center, ID – Northwest Division
“The Art of Neighboring” is a 4 part Bible Study series on how to love our neighbors. Rethink the ways that you actually engage with those around you. Let’s learn how to practically live out Jesus’ command to us! How poignant at this time in history to ask the question, “What if we took the words of Jesus seriously when he said, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. And love your neighbor as yourself.” What? We might be secretly thinking, “You don’t know my neighbor!” ‘I just can’t…I’m not brave enough…” But you can! I’m cheering you on!
Set a time! *Watch with friends- in your small group, online or independently or maybe you’d rather host a watch party. Lots of options.
Major Ronda Gilger shares this material in a way that is conversational and invites viewers to engage with the possibility of carrying out the Great Commission beginning in the spot where your feet are planted.
Be sure to get the FREE student workbook and FREE Neighbor Toolkit. These are downloads that have been added for you!
Watch Videos 1-4 with your women or create an online format or watch party.
Session 1: Rediscovering the Art of Neighboring – Little Things Make a Big Difference
Session 2: The Time Barrier
Session 3: Overcoming Fear
Session 4: The Art of Receiving-Strategies
Before you meet, print the resources for your participants and invite them to go through some of the additional materials during the week. The foundational material has been shared with us by RightNow Media free of charge, and the COVID19 Neighboring toolkit gives additional ideas for safely interacting.
“The Art of Neighboring” complete-Book is available for purchase on Amazon.com
Authors Jay Pathak and Dave Runyon. Jay and Dave have video shorts for teaching available through RightNow Media if you have a subscription.
By Major Dina Graciani
Director of Special Services – Adult Rehabilitation Centers Command
Ae you weary or heavy burdened? Does life seem extremely challenging with all that is thrown at you? Do you feel like “enough is enough” and that you just don’t think you can handle what tomorrow might bring?
Then, I have good news for you, there is a Savior who wants to relieve you of all those burdens that weigh you down in life. His name is Jesus and He loves you more than words can describe.
Consider what troubles or worries you today. I want you to know that Jesus wants you to run to Him, to lay those troubles and worries with Him. The Bible tells us, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28
Jesus wants to carry us, be it through illness, loss of a job, marital challenges, wayward children, any and all that weighs us down can be turned over to Jesus. Give it to Him, give it all to Him and let Him give you rest as you trust in Him. I have often found going to Jesus for rest does not necessarily mean He will take away the burden or challenge but give us the strength to go through it so we can grow through it! It’s during those times of going through the problems of life that we can become stronger in our faith.
Recently I was reminded that under the Son of God’s care we can see His hand of grace blocking things that would cause us much despair. He knows that is more than we could handle so He protects us from being overloaded. Recently at the Riverside ARC, in Perris, California, we had a massive fire that wiped out one of our buildings. Although we lost our entire annex building, God’s hands of grace hovered over our chapel, men’s residence, dining room, administration building and thrift store. It was clearly evident that the hand of God protected our men in our program and all our employees! Yes, the loss of a 100,000 sq. ft. warehouse is devastating but we focus on how God spared the rest of the campus! God knows what we can endure. It’s as if God said to the winds and the fire that took place that day, “no, you’re not touching or torching this!”
Have you been in situations like this? Can you look at a situation that has happened to you or a close family member and see how God has placed your circumstances under the Son’s care?
Proverbs 18:10 say, “The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.” Run to Jesus, let Him carry your burdens and sustain you as you go through life’s challenges, you will find that going through life’s problems with Jesus will offer you the opportunity to grow through it!
When you are under the heat of the sun and life’s daily struggles hit you in the face… know that you are under the Son’s graceful care.
Download the printable version of this devotional
By Lt. Taneya Garrett
Assistant Administrator for Program – Anaheim, CA ARC
Over the years I have met many women who feel like they can’t enjoy life with Jesus. What I’ve noticed is that they are so consumed and broken down by life and their situations, that by the time they remember or even realize that Jesus exist, they’re afraid of Him. Many women don’t realize their need of resting under the Son. They don’t realize that what they are missing is a life with Jesus. They are too worried about what they have done wrong in life, too busy worried about what they have to cook for dinner or if there is a clean shirt in the closet to wear to work the next day.
Ladies, Jesus doesn’t care what our houses look like or what are past sins are. He hasn’t come to condemn us, but rather to love us and help us to find rest under the Son. Just as Jesus said, take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls (Matthew 11:29). It’s amazing to me to think that there are women in this world who don’t have the comfort of knowing the Jesus I know. Jesus wants to love us, support us and be the comfort that we all need. It took me years to realize this and once I started living under the Son and His guidance, it become easier to handle the hard times. I was able to find comfort knowing that everything will be okay, under the Son. Below are a few examples of what could happen when we soak ourselves under the Son.
Comfort & Celebration Under the Son
Luke 22:14-16: When the hour had come, Jesus reclined at the table with His apostles. And He said to them, “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before My suffering. For I tell you that I will not eat it again until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.”
Some of our most noteworthy or important conversations take place when families and friends gather around a table. At mealtime, Jesus taught some of His most insightful lessons and developed the deepest relationships. He had many meals with His disciples, but none with the level of significance as the last one, particularly since it was also the Passover meal. On the eve of His betrayal, Jesus joined His disciples for the Passover feast. He could have gathered with them in fasting and austerity, but He didn’t. Instead, they feasted together, one last supper before the horror to come. That’s very significant.
This tells us that although Jesus knew that great suffering was to come, there was still and always will be time to spend under the Son. Jesus expressed His eagerness to have His last meal with His disciples. Jesus and the disciples had become a family. The disciples had left behind their very own families to learn from Jesus and this would be their last meal together, until they meet again in heaven. Although, Jesus knew that soon He would be killed, he wanted one last supper to fellowship and to celebrate with His disciples. Let this be a reminder when we gather with our families and friends giving thanks for the sacrifice Jesus made, we can find comfort knowing that Jesus celebrated, even knowing the days to come. Let this be a reminder that no matter what tomorrow brings, today we celebrate under the Son together.
How does this passage speak to you? What is your “takeaway”?
How can you and your family find comfort and celebrate together under the Son?
Forgiveness Under the Son
Luke 7:36-50: When one of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have dinner with him, he went to the Pharisee’s house and reclined at the table. A woman in that town who lived a sinful life learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, so she came there with an alabaster jar of perfume. As she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them. When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would know who is touching him and what kind of woman she is—that she is a sinner.” Jesus answered him, “Simon, I have something to tell you.” “Tell me, teacher,” he said. “Two people owed money to a certain moneylender. One owed him five hundred denarii,[a] and the other fifty. Neither of them had the money to pay him back, so he forgave the debts of both. Now which of them will love him more?” Simon replied, “I suppose the one who had the bigger debt forgiven.” “You have judged correctly,” Jesus said. Then he turned toward the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I came into your house. You did not give me any water for my feet, but she wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You did not give me a kiss, but this woman, from the time I entered, has not stopped kissing my feet. You did not put oil on my head, but she has poured perfume on my feet. Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven—as her great love has shown. But whoever has been forgiven little loves little.” Then Jesus said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.” The other guests began to say among themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?” Jesus said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”
While dining at the house of a Pharisee, Jesus is met by a woman who bathes His feet with her tears and dries them with her hair. She spends her time kissing Jesus’ feet and anointing Him with her perfume. This once sinful woman understood what it means to sit under the Son. It makes me chuckle because the Pharisee sees this as shocking behavior. I believe this woman must have had a previous encounter with Jesus, where she was forgiven by Him and now, she is expressing loving gratitude for the forgiveness that Jesus gives. The words Jesus says to her rings in my ears, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”
Jesus didn’t care about this woman’s reputation as “a sinner.” Jesus cared that she had enough faith to come and rest under the Son to express the gratitude that she had for the forgiveness that He gave. This woman most likely spent her entire life longing for this forgiveness, and she was willing to give all she had to express her gratitude. Her mustard seed of faith came in the form of a tiny bottle of perfume. In today’s time that tiny bottle isn’t of much value, but back then it was of great value. Although, the Pharisee was shocked by the woman’s behavior, we should take a page out of her book. The Pharisee was judging her based on her old reputation. When he should have been resting under the Son, while he had the opportunity. The woman is not, in fact, who we as the readers might think she is at first glance. She is forgiven and she knows how to rest under the Son.
How does this passage speak to you?
Have you found forgiveness under the Son?
Joy Under the Son
John 15:10-12: If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.
The word joy is expressed in two ways in verse 11. The first is the joy of Jesus. An emotion, of great happiness and pleasure. Which we can find when we allow ourselves to find joy under the Son. When we have Jesus in our hearts and allow Him to work in our lives, things seem to be a little better. Jesus found joy doing the work of His Father. Jesus found love and joy under God and we should be able to do the same under the Son. Jesus is the example here. Jesus insists that His own obedience to the Father is the reason for his joy; and he promises that those who obey him will share the same joy indeed, that his very purpose in laying down such demands is that our joy may be complete. The second is, our joy. We can rejoice in gladness when we are made complete, when we learn to express love and joy under the Son. As we grow in our understanding of Jesus, we can express that love and joy to the people we encounter. Like Jesus insists that His own obedience to the Father is the reason for his joy; we too, as believers should follow in the example given to us. Under the Son is joy made complete in Jesus name.
Does this passage speak to you? And why?
How are you finding joy under the Son?
There are so many truths to be found under the Son because with Jesus anything is possible. I just think it takes time, sometimes for people understands this. It might be because we haven’t gotten the opportunity to meet and simply rest under the Son. Life is so busy with “to do” lists, and appointments for this or that. There’s too much laundry to do and dishes that have been stacked in the sink for days. We worry too much about everything that doesn’t matter, when we should be resting under the Son. We might say to ourselves; He’ll still be here tomorrow! How often do we allow ourselves to get caught up in that trap? Yes, it’s true, he will be here tomorrow, but, so will the dishes, the laundry and the “to do” list. Ladies, let’s be women who find everything we need today, under the Son.
Download the printable version of this Bible study.
By Major Shari Fowler
Secretary for Program – Adult Rehabilitation Centers Command
No craft idea this month, but enjoy these games and activities out in the sunshine.
Squirt Gun Painting
Set up easels or attach large water-color art paper to an outside wall, tree or hang on a clothesline. Fill squirt guns with liquid water-color paint and fire away! (No squirt guns? Use spray bottles).
Set up 12 plastic sand buckets, 6 on each side and using tennis balls or small, squishy water bomb balls, have teams take turns tossing the ball in the buckets. Team with the most in the buckets after each round, wins.
Human Ring Toss
Yep, just what is says. Use inflatable pool rings and try to “ring” them on a volunteer. Team with the most “ringers” after each round, wins!
Sensory Discovery Walk
Take your group for a walk in the sunshine. You can go to a park, lake, river, mountain, beach or just around the Corps center. As you walk along, stop and ask people to name 5 things they see, 4 things they hear, 3 things they smell, 2 things they can touch, and 1 thing they can taste (maybe). Do this several times along your walk. At the end take time to pray prayers of appreciation for our senses and all the magnificent things God has created.
Download the printable version of these activities.
Below are some fun printable activities to enjoy:
Summer Fun – Word Scramble (free resource) from AllFreePrintables.com
Summer Fun – Word Search (free resource) from crayonsandcravings.com
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