The Center for Leadership Excellence, in partnership with COSROW, is pleased to lift up the voices of women in ministry encouraging fellow women in ministry. Please enjoy this month’s Encouragement from Amie Stewart, ordained deacon in the NC Conference and Director of Conference Relations at the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry. Anyone can sign up to receive these monthly emails here.
The news is rife with heartbreaking scenes of women in deep places of suffering: women who fled the Ukrainian war; mothers who are unable to purchase formula for their infants; the faces of those in communities ravaged by the recent mass shootings.
The lectionary reading for Trinity Sunday spoke to me considering these present realities, at the intersection of suffering and hope.
Read: Romans 5:3-5
And not only that, but we also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.
Reflect: How can I respond, and how can I do anything of significance?
In seminary, a professor referred to a book titled, Signs Amid the Rubble: The Purposes of God in Human History. I confess that while I purchased the book, I did not read it. But that phrase lingered with me – “signs amid the rubble.” An unconscious prompting to look for hope even in darkness.
In early March, Polish women and families left strollers on the platforms of train stations for Ukrainian women to use. These strollers are signs amid the rubble. They are emblematic of the Spirit’s ability to fuel our longing to work for hope.
Take Action: Consider one or two ways in the next month that you might work to establish a “sign amid the rubble.” The simpler the better. Send a text message to reconnect with a friend. Deliver a bag of groceries to a food pantry. Pick up trash you notice in the community. May these simple actions foster greater awareness of the Spirit at work within you to exemplify the hope of Jesus.
Center for Leadership Excellence and the Commission on the Status and Role of Women
Check out these upcoming events open to women clergy and laity alike.
Just Energy 4 All Monthly Webinar
June 15, 2022
June 16, 2022
Just Energy 4 All Working Group
July 5, 2022
July 21-23, 2022