By Kim Chaffin
Praying is such an important part of our growth as Christians, and it is our best defense when life throws a sucker punch at us. It is very important to have place we call our own to pray. I have a favorite chair in my living room where I do my study, but there is a window by the chair and when it comes to my prayer time, that doesn’t work for me. I see one thing out of the corner of my eye and “Squirrel!!” I am off track. If I see the dishes in my sink, I feel like I need to get up and wash them. So many things in my home can easily distract me. After watching the movie, War Room, I knew I needed to make a place to pray.
Not everyone has a closet big enough to turn into a prayer closet. I understand how valuable closet space is but even more valuable is your time with God. Every one of us needs to find some uninterrupted time where we can be open and truly honest with God. I encourage you to find a place in your house where you can do that.
Being empty nesters, our son no longer needs his closet. My husband and I moved in and set up shop. Your prayer closet doesn’t have to be anything fancy. You may not even have room to put a chair in there, but a pillow and a blanket on the floor can make your closet feel cozy.
Be creative. Do you have a spare bedroom that you could go in, close the door, and step away from everything? Do you have a storage room that has room for a chair? Maybe there’s an empty shelf to put your Bible and your prayer journals. If you have a little light and an extension cord, put the light in there. Turning off the overhead light keeps your eyes from being distracted by what you are storing in that room. We keep post-it notes in our prayer room. We can write short prayers or a scripture that really speak to us and stick them on the wall. Using the blue sticky material for hanging posters keeps our post-it notes on the wall.
Maybe your laundry room has no windows but has room to put a chair. Put a little light near the chair and turn the overhead light OFF so you’re not distracted by any laundry that needs to be done. Don’t run your laundry while you’re there either. You don’t need to be distracted by the sound of the washer and dryer. For that matter, turn your chair away from any laundry that needs to be done. If that means looking at the wall, so be it. Use the wall in front of you for a few pictures of your family and sticky notes with prayers and scriptures. Do you remember the lesson about Mary and Martha?
She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:39-42 (NIV)
Be a Mary, not a Martha. Your laundry can be started after you spend time with God. God is not asking for anything fancy. Uninterrupted time is what he’s seeking. Find a place in your home where you can step away from everything and spend a little time with God. I have found that when I step away from all the distractions I really feel the peace of God. I’m excited to step into my prayer closet. Every day I step in with the expectation that God will give me just what I need. He has blown my mind with what He has shown me during our quiet time together and I believe He will do the same for you.
But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. Matthew 6:6 (NIV)
Have you heard about the Whatever Girls prayer challenge, #WhenMomsPray? Click here for more information and to join us.
Do you appreciate the work and mission of the Whatever Girls Ministry? Please consider making a year end investment gift to our ministry. We need partners like you to accomplish the work God has called us to do. Please click here for more information.
By Erin Bishop
I recently had a meeting with my strategic planner for Whatever Girls. As we sipped our coffee and caught up, my friend asked me how things were going with Whatever Girls.
I told her, “Things are going pretty well, but I have an ongoing challenge I can’t seem to overcome. There are a lot of worthy causes out there. Digging wells for clean water in Africa, investing in microenterprises for women in India, giving to 2016 presidential campaigns, and countless others. These are all great causes to invest in, but I have been called to invest in my own back yard-my community and my country. My challenge is communicating the desperate need for support in raising up a generation of world changers in America. Specifically, teen girls.”
I realize that the “American teenage girl” is not likely to be on the forefront of the minds of people looking for a cause to invest in, but I believe that this is the very group we need to invest in if we want to see authentic Christian family values survive our generation.
We have all watched the destruction of America and traditional family values at the hands of those who would turn our country into a place where religious freedom has been replaced with businesses and individuals being fined hundreds of thousands of dollars for refusing to bake a cake for a same sex marriage, and a county clerk is jailed for refusing to sign marriage licenses for same sex marriage, because it goes against their deeply held beliefs. In the name of tolerance, at the risk of being jailed, and the threat of losing everything they have worked hard for, Americans are being forced to follow laws under duress. We need to raise up a generation of patriots who know their Constitutional rights and will not flinch in the face of persecution.
Children are devalued before birth. Abortion has become the birth control of choice, and the body parts of unborn babies are harvested and sold in the name of scientific research. Rather than condemning the murder of innocent babies, the President of the United States of America is defending a woman’s “choice”. We need to raise up a generation of young women who know their worth and the value of abstinence before marriage, and will fight until their final breath for the lives of the unborn.
Fatherless is an epidemic in our country. Because of this, the United States government spends millions of dollars each year subsidizing programs designed to fill the void of fathers, but they are a poor substitute. In less than two weeks, the third annual “Whatever Girls Princess Ball and Sonora Smart Dodd Father of the Year Award” will be held at the Lincoln Center. By attending this event, fathers will be telling their daughter what every girl needs to hear from her father: that she is precious and loved. Psychologist and New York Times bestselling author Dr. Kevin Leman says: “Study after study shows that fathers set up their daughters for success. Involved fathers-whether or not they live in the same house as their daughters-boost their daughters’ academic achievement, promote their emotional health, increase their compassion for others, and even bolster the status of women.”
A few weeks ago in Spokane a 15-year-old boy who attends a Spokane middle school was arrested and is being charged for his role in a prostitution ring led by his 17-year-old brother. This boy is facing child pornography charges due to a nude photo of a teenage girl he took and posted on Facebook. This is one example of what sex trafficking looks like. Sex trafficking, the forced prostitution for the purpose of commercial sex acts such as: prostitution, pornography, escort services, dancing or stripping at clubs, is the second largest criminal enterprise in the world, second only to drug trafficking. At least 100,000 American children are being exploited through pornography or prostitution every year.
Sex trafficking is happening all over the United States, and obviously, right here in Spokane. We need to educate our community about sex trafficking and teach girls how to protect themselves on social media and human interactions, through awareness and prevention. In 2016 we will be taking big steps to join forces with other agencies to eradicate sex trafficking in Spokane and the United States.
We have an opportunity to make a difference in all these areas, and 2016 is going to be a huge year for Whatever Girls. Edmund Burke is credited with saying “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” This is exactly what has happened in America. We haven’t fought back hard enough, and we haven’t dug our heels into the ground. Whatever ground is gained in this generation can be totally lost in the next, if the former generation fails to impart passion for the things of God and integrity to their children. We must have a multi generational mindset and vision and be willing to fight for it.
As we wrap up 2015, one of the biggest needs we have is to secure our non-profit status. This will enable us to receive tax-deductible investment gifts, and apply for grants that are only available to non-profits, and open many other doors to expand our reach.
Please look at our History And Goals so you can see exactly how the Whatever Girls ministry has been positioned and equipped to reach this generation and the next “for such a time as this” (Esther 4:14).
I would like to raise $10,000 by December 31, 2015 so that we can finish 2015 strong and keep the momentum going as we begin 2016.
I invite you to prayerfully consider partnering with us as we move forward in faith that God will provide the necessary resources to accomplish our goals. If you partner with us as either a monthly investor, or occasional investment partner, you will receive quarterly updates about how your investment is reaching Spokane and beyond, and you are always welcome to join us at our events. Click HERE to become an investment partner.
In closing, I want you to know this about my team and me:
- we are participants, not spectators
- we stand up when others are sitting
- we walk when others are standing still
- we don’t see you as “just” a reader. we see you as an investment partner
- we do what we do for Whatever Girls everywhere
Please share a picture of the girl(s) YOU are investing in and use the hash tag #sheiswhy