Written By: Meta Russo
I have always loved Louisa May Alcott’s story of Little Women. It’s on my top 10 list of movies to watch each year at Christmas (along with White Christmas, Charlie Brown, It’s a Wonderful Life, and others). I love the way Marmee gently guides her girls through their struggles, offering her wisdom in shaping their morals. There are even lessons learned by the temperamental Aunt March. She exhibits a judgmental character on the outside but has a heart of gold on the inside. Alcott’s story reminds me of the important role that women play in the lives of girls.
This year, our IPHC emphasis is the value we place on all generations. The connection between Women’s and Girls’ Ministries is a great place to put this value into practice. The need to connect these ministries was clear to our Women’s Ministries founders, who within a year of organizing their own ministry, began a ministry to girls in 1946. The Titus 2:4 principle reminds us that, “The older women must train the younger women.”
The challenges and struggles that young ladies face today can be overwhelming. Girls can see the world right in their hands with just a swipe of the finger. The world bombards them with stories glamorizing single motherhood, casual sexual hook-ups, and even phone apps with make-up tips to help them look like someone they are not. The girls of this culture need Godly women to mentor and influence their lives to counteract the barrage of things thrown at them on a daily basis.
My daughter was tragically killed in a car crash at 12 years of age. She gave her heart to Christ at an early age and I am confident she is in heaven with the Lord today. Although she was brought up in a Christian home, I am forever grateful for the handful of Godly women who took the time to influence and help guide her life. They are, in part, responsible for her making it to her heavenly home and will share in the reward when we are reunited in heaven someday.
There are many passages in the book of Deuteronomy that command us to, “…pass on God’s word and works to your children and grandchildren” (Deut 4:9-10, 6:5-9, 11:19). We need women to step forward and pass on the knowledge that they have to our girls. Valuable life experiences that are uniquely yours can become life lessons taught in the classroom or in a mentoring and sharing environment. I can distinctly remember God-fearing ladies in my own childhood who directly influenced my life. One taught me tools and tricks for memorizing Biblical truths like the Ten Commandments and the days of creation. Another became a close friend and confidant when my family was shattered by divorce. These are just two examples of women who allowed God to use them to help shape me into the person I am today.
To have our girls transition into the leaders of tomorrow, we need courageous and strong ladies who are willing to share with the next generation. Ministry to girls is an integral part of the future of Women’s Ministries, these ministries need each other. Psalm 78:4 says, “We will tell the next generation about the glorious deeds of the Lord, about his power and his mighty wonders.”
We need the wisdom of all generations to carry out the mandate set before us in God’s Word. So, start today by making an intentional decision to influence the lives of “our little women.”
Meta Russo serves on the IPHC Girls’ Ministries Board. She brings a wealth of knowledge about the importance of both Women’s and Girls’ Ministries. She has served her conference, Spirit Life Ministries (formerly Upper South Carolina), as both the Girls’ and Women’s Ministries directors. Meta and her husband, Bob, pastor a church where she leads the Friends group (middle school girls).