I picked up the phone, ready to hear the usual joke about me taking forever to answer…instead, I was met with silence.
“Are you okay? What’s wrong?”
The next questions/statements punched me in the stomach as I sat speechless.
“Why did God not help her or save her?”
“She was only a baby.”
“She didn’t even sin.”
“How do we know heaven is real?”
“What if this is all fake…the Bible might just be a made-up book.”
As she told me about the tragedy her family was walking through, confusion and pain dripped off each word. All I could do at that moment was silently pray that God would give me His words to comfort her.
This is real life. This is Girls’ Ministries.
When it comes to the difficult things in life, how are we equipping our girls to stand when their world is crumbling?
The Word of God:
In everything we do and say, our words should point them back to the source—God and His Word. The Bible is the most powerful weapon we can give a girl. Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” The Word of God is able to distinguish good from bad. It brings clarity to a confused mind.
When a girl is in the midst of chaos, His Word brings peace. When a girl is celebrating her biggest accomplishment, His Word brings encouragement and reassurance. When a girl is buried deep in sin, His Word frees her from her bondage. “Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. The darkness is driven out by light” (Psalm 119:105). Darkness cannot live in the presence of light.
When I was younger, I often heard this statement: “Read your Bible and pray.” This made sense in my mind, but when it came to actually reading and praying, I felt overwhelmed. The questions I struggled with sounded like: “Where do I start?” and “These stories were written for people thousands of years ago…How do they apply to me?” Be mindful of taking time to teach girls how to read the Bible as you point them towards it. Don’t just assume she already knows this skill. There are many devotionals/resources to help girls walk through Bible reading. Here is an article I found helpful from LifeWay Girls that outlines tips when teaching girls how to study the Bible: Click for link
Hurt hurts. When a girl is walking through difficulties, it is sometimes hard to see through that pain to make sense of anything. Her action of reaching out and asking for help could indicate you are doing something right, even if it’s in the form of anger or hostility! Recognized or not, you are now a support person in her life, and she trusts you enough to tell you about the pain she’s experiencing.
She may come to you seeking advice. She may need you to simply listen. She may need a hug and encouragement. Whatever it is, be present. Be authentic and sit with her in those moments. Take time; sit in the pain, not being too quick to jump to problem-solving. Most importantly, pray and ask the Holy Spirit for direction as you begin conversations. Listen and be obedient as you feel Him leading you. One of the most impactful things we can do as leaders is to be present and walk beside girls in their journey of life.
James 5:13 says, “Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise.” In joy and sorrow, prayer is the answer. Let your own life serve as an example that prayer is the first response in tough situations. Take opportunities to teach your girls how to pray. Give them opportunities to practice talking to God so they feel confident when they are on their own. While you encourage them to cultivate a relationship with God, pray for their prayer life to become natural and second nature.
One cannot predict when difficult things in life will happen; however, we can engage, enlighten, encourage, and equip our girls to meet these challenges. We can allow them to see our genuine love for God, our faithfulness to read and study His Word, and our eagerness to talk to Him about everything! With our lives, we enlighten girls by helping them learn about who God is and what He has done. We pray for them as the Holy Spirit draws them and illuminates the Word to their hearts and minds. We pray that our girls desire to seek and KNOW GOD, too. By supporting them on their journey, and being quick to pray, we are modeling a relationship of trust and love. When those difficult moments come that we can’t understand or control, we acknowledge that we do not have all of the answers, but the God who knew us before we were ever born loves us, is with us, and is working all things out in His time. With Him, we stand!
Psalm 46:1 God is our refuge and strength an ever-present help in trouble.”
Meredith Light currently serves as the Coordinator of Girls' Ministries. She was born and raised in Southwest Kansas. She is a 2017 graduate of Southwestern Christian University and has served in IPHC Discipleship Ministries since 2016. Meredith loves spending time with her family, making others laugh, and collecting random miniature figurines/squirrels. Fake squirrels, not real ones.