For years, I had dreamt of being part of a women’s group that did more than just study and play together.
I relished Bible study groups with meaningful discussion, and I appreciated gatherings for fun. But I longed for more than game nights, and more than question-and-answer workbooks.
Considering God’s message to His people in the book of Isaiah, I wanted to spend myself on behalf of the poor. I wanted generosity to characterize my life. I knew I could do that on my own – or with my family – but I wanted to experience giving with others, too.
I assumed I was the only one who desired it.
Then one day, I heard about Women of Vision, an initiative of the international Christian aid organization World Vision. Women in these groups study Scripture and read books to understand God’s heart for the poor. These women learn, grow and act – together. Motivated by this, they also raise funds for life-saving, gospel-centered work overseas.
By the summer of 2016, I began inviting women to be part of a new Women of Vision group I hoped to launch in Orlando, Florida. I reached out to around 20 women. Six of us gathered for our first meeting. We set our first fundraising goal at $350, hoping to contribute to the mother and child health programs led by World Vision.
We prayed. We looked at Bible verses. We read the book The Hole in Our Gospel by Richard Stearns. Before the summer ended, we had raised $547 by selling books and clothing, and holding a women’s clothing swap where “shoppers” contributed to the cause. For our next goal, we’ve set our sights higher: $400 to support World Vision’s clean water efforts. As our group grows, our potential to bless more people grows too.
God uses His people all over the world to express His love, grace and mercy. He has given me and these women the privilege of joining Him in the joy of giving.
How you can join God in being generous:
God sees our hearts as we give to him, even when we feel ashamed. He is like a dad who sees his daughter as she gives him a plastic donut.
Jesus gave Himself as a fragrant sacrifice. Our gifts to God can also be an expression of worship.
Marilyn launched a movement of generous givers in Southeast Asia and is influencing the world.
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