If we want to be difference makers in a world like this, we have to keep moving in spite of our fears. We have to have courage. Courage isn’t the absence of fear; it’s the absence of self. To move forward with courage doesn’t mean you’re not afraid of anything; it means your main focus is on God and others, not yourself, so you can do what you know you’re called to do even if it puts you at risk.
My wife, Kelly, was invited to a women’s prayer group on Tuesday nights after these moms got the little ones to bed. Like all difference-making endeavors, it began with a burden. One of the participants, Leigh, opened her home for a prayer meeting after deciding something had to be done about human trafficking. How could she hear the stats declared at a conference she attended and go back to life as usual? But at the same time, how is a stay-at-home mom of three going to battle such a powerful and ruthless industry?
This group of ladies prayed prayers of power. This wasn’t a pray a bit then eat some brownies church group. As they courageously prayed, God moved. This difference-making thing requires the audacity to say, “Not in our city. God, we are calling on you.” Leigh opened her home, the ladies opened their hearts, and God opened the heavens. I remember reading articles in the Houston Chronicle about brothels being raided and enslaved women being rescued. I would call out to Kelly, “God is answering your prayers, and it is documented in the newspaper!” How amazing to see real-time change in the third largest city in the United States coming from the valor of sweet, kind, and shaking-the-gates-of-hell church ladies.
The story doesn’t end there. With the encouragement of her husband and friends, Leigh gallantly helped start the “Freedom Church Alliance”1 that connects churches together to fight human trafficking in Houston. They now have an office and staff members who are a resource for the City of Houston, law enforcement, and several anti-trafficking organizations. They fund strategic projects and developed a tool kit called “The Go Box” to empower everyday people to fight trafficking. They are making a huge difference.
What a difference-making story only God could write. A sweet stay-at-home mom of three along with prayerful women decides to stand up against organized evil AND is seeing victories!
How did this happen? Courage, faith, consistency, and prayer. Not muscle, brawn, or personality. “‘Not by strength or by might, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD . . .” (Zech. 4:6). With ladies praying, leaders leading, and God moving . . . look out, traffickers! Look out, world! Where is God calling you to have more courage than you do? Just take the next step.
Gregg Matte, Difference Makers: How to Live a Life of Impact and Purpose (Nashville, TN: B&H Books, 2019).
Want to fill your church with Difference Makers? It will take more than reading one article. I’d recommend you have every group in your church study this excellent book.
We have just completed a Bible study to guide your group into meditating on and applying these truths. The Difference Makers is our Bible Study based on Greg Matte’s book Difference Makers. It consists of 8 lessons with ready-to-use questions suitable for groups. It can be purchased on Amazon and is also available as part of Good Questions Have Groups Talking Subscription Service.