We connect ministry wives around the globe for the purpose of prayer, encouragement, awareness, accountability, bible study and friendship.

Lesson from the Fishbowl

By: Donna Avant Recently my husband, John, purchased a fish and a fishbowl to use in a sermon illustration.  His plan was to give away the fish and the fishbowl the next week.  However, he grew fond of the fish and, oddly, I have also.  He confessed last week to our entire congregation that he has found himself on occasion talking to the fish he has now named, D.O.C. (Disciple of Christ)!  I promise you that John has not lost his mind.   The truth is this little black beta fish has reminded us both of some very valuable lessons we have learned over 38 years of being in the ministry. The transparency of the fishbowl is crucial.    Upon becoming a pastor’s wives 38 years ago, I was told that fishbowl life was terrible.  Everyone would be watching me; everyone examining my every move.   Yet, what I have discovered is that living in a fishbowl is actually...

Jesus, Our Joy–Lesson 6

When I was in college, I took a psychology class where we studied Pavlov's dogs. These dogs were quickly trained/conditioned that when a bell rang they would be fed. They were quick learners at cause and effect. Many of us have been conditioned to believe that if we manage to stack a resumé of good deeds together, we will experience the favor of God. It really makes good sense. However, Paul warns us in Phililppians 3 against putting our confidence in the flesh. He puts into perspective the contrast of a mechanical religion versus an intimate relationship. Lesson 6 will challenge us to view our self-righteous acts as the puny achievements they are and turn our pursuits toward God.

Jesus, Our Joy–Lesson 5

In our fifth lesson, we piggy back onto lesson 4 where we considered how God handles the humble. Though we see how God exalts, extends mercy and provides generously for the humble, God is not indifferent to the proud. The week we consider signs of pride in our own hearts and Paul's challenge to lower ourselves. With a goal of taking the low place, we are freed from the exhausting stance of defense. When we value the interest of others above our own, we are no longer compelled to be right and are thus relieved from the burden of maintaining some reputation. We are released from the idols of greed, control, and status. we realize we don't have anything to defend. Paul's words are challenging and encouraging as we discover just what it means to experience Jesus as our true joy.

lesson 5, jesus...

Good News of the Dark Day!

Recently, an Uber conversation turned to the reason I was in the city. In the midst of dialogue, my driver said, "We are the same in our religion.  You have your prophet, and I have mine!"  My response stopped him.  "Well you can say that but not me.  You see my Savior came and died for me so that I will never have to be concerned with religion ever again!  It's not my religion but about my relationship with the One who gave His life for me so that I could be CERTAIN that I would spend eternity with Him and Our Father!" I know where I will spend eternity and because of this I live to please the ONE who died for me. The driver was intrigued and asked if we might continue this conversation another time.  I answered affirmatively and handed him my card.  I hope the day will come that this man...

White Puff Balls and the Gospel

By:  Jodi Aiken Wildflowers and weeds occupied the large lot next to the home where I grew up. I loved wandering around the turf searching for treasures. I especially liked to find dandelions. Their yellow petals transform into a white puff ball called a seed head. Finding my treasure, I would bend down, carefully breaking the stem without causing the ball to fall apart. While holding my breath, I held it close to my chest making a wish. Then, I would bring it up to my mouth and blow it as hard as I could. The white puff ball exploded in every direction as if carrying the message of my wish to a magical place. As I recalled this childhood memory, I recognized that as believers in Christ Jesus, we are much like the white puff ball of the dandelion. The ball holds many seeds, and each seed is attached to a stem with white fur...

Jesus, Our Joy–Lesson 4

We've made it 1/3 way through our study. It's easy to get behind because well, life. We all have a lot going on which is why online Bible study is such a gift. However, the Enemy is an expert at making us feel guilty and shamed if we don't have all the blanks filled in or haven't gotten it all done by the time we think we should. Let me encourage you to not give in to such discouragement. If you get behind, that's okay. Jump back in and don't rush. Let God speak to you through each day of study in His Word. God isn't eager to scold you but instead He longs to meet with you and transform you. Lesson 4 brings us to Chapter 2. Brace yourself because Chapter 2 comes packed with some harsh words and most likely some crushed toes. As we...

Contextual Living

It was Monday, and despite how tired we were after a full weekend of ministry, we headed to Animal Kingdom to kick off our boys spring break with a bang! We knew that the week ahead would require us to be away from Michael and Ryan a lot and really wanted to spend some quality time loving on them. The weather wasn't great, mostly over cast and drizzly, but not enough to call it quits. We sauntered through the park and as we did, received some unexpected texts regarding conference accommodations for the next day, which unfortunately required our immediate attention. We continued on as my husband and I addressed separate issues on our phones, when a couple moving at a slightly faster pace skirted by, looking at us with much disapproval. As they passed, the man proceeded to say, snarkily, "Well that's great parenting!" referring to us both being on our phones at a theme...

Jesus, Our Joy–Lesson 3

In this lesson, we finish up Paul's introduction of his letter to the Philippians. This section of the letter certainly challenges our way of thinking when it comes to experiencing true joy. We discover that Paul is living out some of our worst nightmares when it comes to opposition to our faith in Christ. So many of us question if we could actually follow through the way that Paul did in the midst of really difficult circumstances. Paul seems to give us some insight as to his secret as we discover his goals and perspective toward his life purpose. I feel confident that God will use Paul's words to challenge and encourage you. As a western Christian, I'm not sure that Paul's letter to the Philippians isn't most relevant to prepare us for what is to come in the years ahead. My prayer is that God will...

Jesus, Our Joy–Lesson 2

In this lesson, we will take a more in-depth look at Paul's opening words to the church in Philippi. With the knowledge we have about the specific people Paul is writing to, Paul's words will carry more weight and meaning. We will discover one of Paul's major themes throughout the letter as well as considering a shift in our heart attitude toward those in God's church whom we don't like or agree with. As we consider the relationships in our lives (Christians and non-Christians) we are desperately in need of God's guidance in both love and discernment. Paul gives us some challenging words and a road map toward receiving and living out His love and discernment.

Jesus, Our Joy–Intro

Meet Bobi Ann Allen, your teacher for the Jesus, Our Joy study. She'll introduce you to more about the study in this video:

    how online Bible study works from Bobi Ann Allen on Vimeo. Purchase Study Guide Here Head on over the Jesus, Our Joy Forum to introduce yourself. Jesus, Our Joy Discussion Forum