By Gayle Parlett
Gayle with her husband, Don.
We laughed until the tears flowed. We danced with joyful abandon. We built deeper relationships, and we learned new skills. And this all happened in a completely unexpected way while serving God.
In April, PPF Director of Ministry Advancement, Ed Lyons, spoke at my church, Bay Ridge Christian Church in Annapolis, MD. As he was speaking, I couldn't help but wonder how God could use me to help the people in Sudan. As a mother of two young children, going to Sudan seemed unlikely.
Bay Ridge Pastor Bret Hicks, with his wife, Linda, and their two children.
Then Ed said something that captured my attention: "Start where you are." As he talked about how Persecution Project Foundation endeavors to meet the spiritual and physical needs of the people with whom they work, he mentioned the 100 Wells Campaign. He then explained how he and his 11-year old daughter made bracelets together to raise money to drill wells in Jaac.
Although I had never before made bracelets, I knew this was the way God would have me get involved with PPF. Ed e-mailed me a list of supplies and provided me with an instructional video on how to make bracelets.
Then God gave me another idea. Once a month, the ladies at Bay Ridge gather for a "Ladies' Night Out." As I talked with the ladies' leader about hosting an evening of beading, I realized both of us had been given the same idea. It was wonderful confirmation that God was working through us for His good pleasure.
Associate Pastor Garey's wife, Autumn, oversaw the ladies' bracelet-making activity.
After facing different trials and obstacles, eleven ladies gathered to make 15 bracelets. Our youth group then got together and made even more bracelets. To date, we have sent 127 bracelets to PPF, with more still to be shipped.
I was incredibly blessed throughout this adventure. I danced with joyful abandon with my youngest son as we listened to the catchy tune on the bracelet-making video. I learned a new skill and entered into a deeper relationship with the leader of our ladies' group as we manipulated the crimping tools. And the night with the youth group (one girl and many boys) resulted in joyous laughter.
Youth leader, Jer, and his wife, Hannah, had a good time making bracelets with the Bay Ridge Christian Church youth group.
Truly God's yoke is easy, and His burden is light when we walk in obedience to Him. And it's as simple as Starting Where You Are.