Last January, I commented on Ruth’s blog asking:
Do you offer classes online? I don’t live anywhere near your church. Just curious. Thanks!
It seemed like an innocuous question. Here we are a year later – ministry partners, good friends, her husband has babysat my kids, and we’ve been on a double date. Even though we live over 1,000 miles apart, Ruth has become a household name. My oldest son even wrote when Ruth will visit on his pocket calendar. God is a good, good God full of surprises.
When I contacted Ruth, what seems like lightyears ago, she had been teaching women the Awaken-Love study for three years in the Minneapolis area. Following God’s calling, she shepherded women as they discovered God’s design for intimacy within marriage and ministered to countless other men and women through her www.christiansexclass.org blog. When she replied to my question, asking if I would be interested in skyping into a class, I don’t think she ever dreamed that God intended for our lives to become so intertwined. I certainly didn’t see it coming at all!
In 2015, the Awaken-Love ministry…
- formalized the Women’s Study curriculum
- developed resources to train and equip teachers
- created and piloted a complimentary Men’s Study
- merged www.christiansexclass.org and this website
- had five teachers of the Women’s Study join the ministry (including me)
- had women from other states, and even other countries, participate in the study online
- joined social media (though Ruth and I are both low-tech gals)
- spoke God’s truth about sex to various groups of women and couples
- printed business cards and t-shirts with our new logo (bling!)
- had God confirm our path forward again and again. (If you haven’t read how we became partners, then it’s worth a few minutes of your time.)
…and more. It was an Ephesians 3:20 year.
Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us…
It truly is His power at work in us. Ruth and I are pretty ordinary women following an extraordinary God! As we enter 2016, our eyes are wide open. We seek to follow God wherever He leads us. So far, we only know a glimpse of what 2016 holds.
Next week, on January 19th, Ruth and I will be live on Missions Radio at 2pm CST. It’s our first ever interview and we are excited to be physically together for it. You can go to www.missionsradio.org to listen in or download the Live365 app on your phone and tune in to the Missions Radio channel.
We are also on the path to record small group videos for the Women’s Study. Our hope is that women will invite their closest friends into their living rooms to talk about God’s truth about sex and that marriages will be transformed. The videos will provide the teaching for the six week study while the hostess facilitates the discussion. Though we love teaching classes in person, we simply can’t equip teachers fast enough to meet the requests for classes. We are currently about half way in raising the funds needed to produce this video series and hope to launch it in the fall.
Ruth and I will continue teaching and equipping others to teach as God calls them. We’re excited for the new teachers shepherding women through the Awaken-Love study this spring to see God powerfully move in women’s lives and marriages.
We will keep blogging – writing respectful “how- to’s” and sharing insights we learn on our own journeys.
Behind the scenes, Ruth and I plan to create an advisory group for the ministry this year. We may not know what is ahead, but we are assured that “with many advisers they succeed.” (Proverbs 15:22) We are also praying God reveals His desire for the Men’s Study that was piloted. Will He call men to teach? Will we create small group videos for the study so that men can meet with their friends? We are holding it loosely until Our Father reveals His will.
We are not following our plans. Neither of us planned, or could have planned, this wild ride. Instead, we continually seek to be in the center of the path God has prepared for us. It is our privilege to point men and women to God. Only He can change people. Only He can transform marriages. We have no expertise of our own. Ruth and I simply share His Truth and how He has changed us. We love hearing how God is changing you too!
Let’s continue on this journey together – seeking God’s best for our marriages, claiming God’s design for intimacy and sharing His truth with others – in 2016. May we all marvel at what He has done a year from now!