A recent guest speaker encouraged my congregation to take Christ out of the church and into the community. I wondered which of my friends would respond. I knew I wouldn't. I'm not exactly a theological go-getter. What I am is a minivan driving, over-programmed mother of three who spends summers at the pool slathered in SPF 45. But whenever I thought about the speaker's words (always in the context of how his message would work through other folks), I had a crazy vision of seeing the women of my neighborhood reading their Bibles at the pool.
This wasn't the first time I'd felt a nudge from the Holy Spirit. And if I chose to ignore this nudge, well, that wouldn't be the first time either.
But I couldn't shake that crazy vision. And the idea took hold: I could invite the women in my neighborhood to read the Bible during the summer. But not just a book or two. The whole Bible in 90 days.
Because it was such an ambitious plan, I thought maybe six or seven women would agree. And half of us might finish. Regardless of the number, I told myself that if even one woman did it (and that one woman was me), it would be worth it.
I quietly asked a couple of my friendliest neighbors what they thought of my idea.
"Love it!" was the consensus.
That boost gave me the confidence to push myself out of my comfort zone and reach out to others I didn't know as well. After e-mailing neighborhood friends and encouraging them to invite others, I was blown away when 20 women took the plunge!
All the Details
We all know it's easier to get a group of busy women to agree to start something than it is to get them to finish it. How could I ensure that the women kept reading from Genesis through Revelation?1