Amidst Dr. Seussian sculpted trees, elephant fountains, orchid gardens and rich Thai hospitality, 20 women representing 12 nations came together for 10 days of rest, worship and lack of rest. Say what? While the setting was exquisitely peaceful, the ladies worked hard. It was an intensive women’s ministry training offered by Entrust partner Equipping Women International.
The women, each in full-time ministry, completed at least 50 hours of pre-study prior to coming to Thailand, then spent another 50 hours of classroom time, some in Facilitating Relational Learning, some in Developing a Discerning Heart and some in Discovery Bible Study. “God truly was in the middle of us,” reflects coordinator Debbie Lamp, “working his good into every one of our lives.”
For information about next year’s training in Thailand, visit www.entrust4.org/ThaiHub.
Rachel Wilson serves with SIM in Ethiopia and has taken three Entrust modules, including Discovery Bible Study (DBS) which I co-facilitated at our training hub in Switzerland in March. She and I re-connected at the wedding of an SIM staff member this past July. At our table, we were surrounded by SIM staff.
It was a thrill to hear Rachel, second-generation Entrust learner, tell the women at the table about Facilitating Relational Learning, Developing a Discerning Heart and DBS. The best part was her describing how she’s passing along what she’s learned with other women, including nationals in Ethiopia and women in the States. An SIM worker who served in Nigeria for many years was excited to hear about the training and asked for more information. God continues to widen the opportunities for Entrust across the world thanks to participants like Rachel who are “multiplying.” – Trish Barrett, Entrust facilitator and Mid-Atlantic hub coordinator
Nine women from multiple nations are grappling with God’s work in their lives as you read this. Entrust’s ministry partner, Equipping Women International, is holding an intensive Developing a Discerning Heart (DDH) module in Brazil through April 5, involving seven participants and two facilitators.
Ask God to open each woman’s mind and heart to how they need his healing touch — recognizing any lies they may believe, people they need to forgive, new truths God wants them to hear and stand firm in. Pray for safe travel, as the road to the meeting site is notoriously bad. Pray for physical health for each one and for their families at home. And pray each woman will pass along what she’s learning now, to those in her realms of ministry, after this training is complete.
“Eleven women traveled from all over Brazil and a few came from Ecuador. They were all so thankful for the training and I can honestly say that there were a couple of women that even looked different by the end!! Their whole countenance had been transformed by the week of receiving encouragement and affirmation from other like-minded women, and feeling confident about using what they had been taught and modeled.”
So reported one of the Developing a Discerning Heart facilitators at the Equipping Women International (Entrust partner) session in Brazil last month. This sentiment is confirmed by these women’s own words:
“I don’t feel so afraid or inadequate to facilitate Bible study. I feel like I can use these skills anywhere I go and I’m excited to put them to use.”
“…a tremendous help (to me) in helping others to sort out and work constructively on their issues.”
“…importance of helping others find answers through good questions, Holy Spirit, and God’s word.”
Becky Segrest is a WWMT* student, facilitator and mentor in Texas. She’s taken and facilitated our modules multiple times and continues to meet informally with many of her DDH* ladies.
“One of the most helpful things I learned in these modules is the use of good, open-ended questions. This practice has changed how I relate to a group. FRL* helps a woman feel more confident to step out and lead a group of women in any type of Bible study. This module is very effective in encouraging meaningful conversations within the group.
“Although I am not normally a self-examining person, DDH helped me begin to examine areas of my heart/life I had never considered, especially revealing areas that were not open to God … where I wasn’t depending on God and his guidance. Several ladies in our groups have problems such as illnesses, loss of a husband or child or job, or difficulty with grown children. After studying DDH together, they’ve opened their hearts to share their pain or even sometimes their shame. I would highly recommend these modules to any woman who wants to begin leading studies or sharing life in more meaningful ways with other women.”
*WWMT: Women-to-Women Ministry Training
*DDH: Developing a Discerning Heart, WWMT core training module
*FRL: Facilitating Relational Learning, WWMT core training module
For more information on WWMT, go to www.entrust4.org/WWMT.
Or, sign up for training in:
~Maryland in late July/early August
~Texas in September (hurry to get early bird fees)
~Thailand in late October/early November
Go to www.entrust4.org/2016Training to register.
The women at Christian Fellowship Church in Novi Sad, Serbia, are eager to learn and grow. Entrust’s Sandy Shaffer enjoyed several sessions on a recent weekend with the ladies, covering Lessons 2 and 3 of Entrust’s ministry training course, Developing a Discerning Heart.
The ladies “have lots of questions and most of them are coming from very broken families,” Sandy reports. Many in the region experience poverty. But hearts are being lifted as hurts are discovered and healed through surrender to Christ.