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    Author: Mercella Bingham

    Category: The Pulse - 2017.40 Issue 40, The Pulse 2017

    What Stephen Ministry Means to Me

    STEPHEN MINISTRY HAS BEEN A TREMENDOUS BLESSING as it provides me the opportunity to care for others and encourage them in their faith walk. The beauty of this ministry is that we depend on God who is the author and finisher of our faith; so dependency is totally on Him to heal, strengthen, remove strongholds that at times cause distress, discouragement, depression or lead to a feeling of total hopelessness.

    God is indeed the “cure-giver” and we are His servants who offer care to hurting people by coming alongside them in their times of need. That doesn’t mean that we don’t have the same needs, but I have personally committed myself and have asked God to use me and through the Holy Spirit’s leading to allow me to “not waste my pain,” but to give me strength to embrace my sufferings and use my experiences enveloped in His word and prayers to accomplish this desire to serve in Stephen Ministry. I enjoy serving in Stephen Ministry and have been blessed with the results of the care receivers I have had the privilege to serve. We still stay in touch and now as sisters in Christ continue to encourage each other.

    I also benefited from the ministry as a care receiver when I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. Having someone to listen and pray with me frequently was indeed a blessing, and I have gained a lifelong friend through this process. I strongly recommend Stephen Ministry and encourage my sisters and brothers in Christ to be open and vulnerable - don’t suffer in silence - we are here to help. Please know that Stephen Ministers hold your precious trust in us and information shared in complete confidence.

    Personally, the tools that I have learned have helped me in my relationships. For example, I am communicating better with my spouse and extended family members. I also see changes at work and in my personal growth; especially in the areas of listening and assertiveness. I have always considered prayer as the key weapon to fight this fight.

    I have enjoyed working with children in Sunday School, but my natural ability is to help people. Therefore, Stephen Ministry’s training enhances this desire. Pastor Scott always encourages us to find a place to grow at WEFC, and for me I think that for now Stephen Ministry is that sweet spot.

    Thank you for the opportunity to learn, grow, and share!