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Out on the Edge of Ministryby Tom Walsh
It’s Christmastime and Rebecca* is alone in her home. She is newly divorced. The feelings of confusion, isolation, doubt and fear creep over her heart. She’s a Christian. This wasn’t supposed to happen to her. This wasn’t what she ever dreamed for her life. She’s adrift.
Miles away, DivorceCare ministry leader Kerry Johnson is praying for her. A few months earlier, Rebecca had found her way to this vital ministry of First Church. For many years and under many faithful leaders, this ministry has stayed out on the edge of life, walking with people in what may be their darkest valley, providing the light of truth and the oil of grace.
Brian and Kerry Johnson, along with Patti Sicord, meet weekly with as many as twenty participants—listening, sharing, praying and engaging a powerful curriculum. Divorce ministry has been a lifeline for many years and a wonderful doorway through which numbers of people have found Christ and a home at our church. The present generation of leaders offer warmth, compassion and wisdom as they provide a safe and healthy place for folks to heal.
As Kerry prays for Rebecca, she senses that God would have sent a text message to Patti asking her to swing by Rebecca’s home to see if she’s okay. She had no way of knowing that, at that moment, Patti was parked at the end of Rebecca’s street and had just prayed for wisdom. Because the leaders want to be supportive but never intrusive, the ministry requires real discernment. And so Patti is checking in with God, seeking to determine if stopping by is the right thing to do.
Her phone beeps. It’s Kerry asking her if she has time to check in on Rebecca. The visit is made, and Christ’s love is shared one more time.
And so the DivorceCare ministry is bathed in prayer and built on prayer. The faithful leaders make themselves available, but Jesus is the Healer.
*Not her real name
For details on the First Church DivorceCare ministry, please click here.