Psalm 105:1 tells us to “make known His deeds among the people,” so I wanted to share a few of the ways we saw the Lord work at the recent Bright Lights Conferences in Wisconsin and Nebraska.
Small Group Combination
Rachel Wissmann (right) reported that while she got acquainted with one of the girls on her small group team in the sanctuary before the conference started, the girl shared how she had been through a traumatic accident, but how through it the Lord showed His goodness and faithfulness in her life. Later that evening, during the first small group time, a different girl in Rachel’s group explained how she had trouble trusting God’s goodness. So, Rachel asked the first girl she had met (who had the traumatic accident) to share her testimony with the whole group. This was just the perfect thing for the other girl to hear, and it was also a catalyst for some great conversation for the whole team. We were reminded how God answered prayer in putting the right girls on the right teams!
“When I first arrived I didn’t think I was going to fit in here, but I’m so glad I came!” one girl told Sarah. She continued, “And I’m the type of person who, when I like something, I bring all my friends too!”
We knew that some of the girls didn’t want to come, and Sarah had actually asked me to send an e-mail to our church’s e-mail loop back home to ask for prayer regarding those girls. We saw many answers to that prayer.
One girl, just by her body language, made it obvious she didn’t want to be there. One of our leaders, Abby, noticed this right away and began praying. Later we learned this girl had a big turnaround and by the end of the night she was enthusiastically interacting with the group.
Another girl at the Purity Conference was goofing off with her friends, but in her response form she wrote something about how she wanted to “talk to her parents about crushes and things and save her first kiss for her wedding.”
Lessons that “Stuck”
One of the most encouraging reports I heard about was from Kara, who had attended a Radiant Purity Conference in Omaha two years ago. She shared how the Lord worked in her life at that conference and gave her a new perspective and desire to live for Him.
Sarah told her it was really encouraging to see the lessons that were taught stick with girls.
“Oh it stuck,” she and her mom said in unison and laughed.
But that’s only part of the story. You see, two months after the conference two years ago, Kara had a brain aneurism and a very serious surgery. Kara shared a testimony at this conference (picture above) about how she can now see the Lord’s hand of preparation. She strongly testified with joy how the Lord is faithful.
Lost Contact Lens
Right before the final session at the WI Purity Conference, I lost one of my contacts while leading my small group discussion outside. I looked for a few minutes and found nothing. I wear the tiny hard kind so finding it in the grass would be very unlikely. “A needle in a haystack,” my dad said. But they are expensive and inconvenient to reorder. I had to go in for the next session but prayed that my Dad and John (another guy helping Stephen) would find it. They decided to take a 6 inch square of grass and thoroughly search, and amazingly they found it in about 10 seconds!
Small Group Distraction Fixed
One of the younger girls was very disruptive in her small group, so Sarah was going to remove her from the group for a little while by doing some one-on-one time with her. But she was resistant to both Sarah and her small group leader and would not come out of the room. So a handful of girls outside the door prayed and asked the Lord to calm this girl down so that the small group could continue without distraction. But before they had even finished praying, the girl stood up and walked right out of the room on her own initiative. They considered this a little miracle, and the small group leader (inside the room) was so surprised, not knowing about the prayer.
Smooth Equipment and Health
As we list answers to prayer, one thing that we are so grateful for is all the things that didn’t go wrong. Thankfully, the technical side of things ran pretty smooth the whole time–thanks to Stephen who does a great job keeping that all under control. We are also grateful that no one on our team got sick. When you are living with 15-20 other girls for two weeks sickness can travel quickly!
Danielle (above), one of our leaders, told us about an 18-yr-old girl in her group at the Radiant Purity conference who had been hurt and humiliated by people she trusted. Danielle was praying for a chance to talk one-on-one with her, and before the last main session it worked out for them to stay back and talk privately. Tears streamed down this girl’s cheeks as Danielle shared that she can be pure in Christ’s eyes, no matter what has happened to her, and that He will place a robe of righteousness on her which will make her so beautiful to God. She also wept as Danielle assured her that as she allows God to mold her inner character, some day a godly young man will love her and cherish and protect her, and won’t judge her as other people in her past have—or view her as damaged. Danielle shared the gospel with her and sent her away with the Scripture verses written on a paper and she repeatedly thanked Danielle.
Though the conferences in Oshkosh and Omaha are over, the Lord’s work is far from finished. And, as Lindsay (Bright Lights leader in Omaha) reminded us in an e-mail, Ecclesiastes 3:14 says “I know that, whatsoever God doeth, it shall be forever: nothing can be put to it, nor anything taken from it: and God doeth it, that men should fear before him.”
Praise God that nothing can stop His work.
We would really appreciate it if you would join us in prayer for the upcoming conferences in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Minnesota.