"You mean they didn't reject you or disgrace you? What, they fed you too?" The widows we invited to this conference in India were used to the rejection by their culture and were blamed for the death of their husbands, no matter the cause of their death. The intent of this meeting was to enlighten the pastors and their wives as well as widows on what the Word of God said about this forgotten army of widows. We were there to empower the widows and to lift off the shame by introducing them to the Lord, Jesus Christ! The One who is greater than the culture standards, using the higher law!
Yet when you have been in a system where they think you are a bad omen and one who will cause them harm, rejection is common. We invited hundreds to this three-day gathering but only about 20 brave ones showed up. I believe they were hungry and were willing to risk the shame in order to get something to eat. I am sure the deacons and their wives as well as other leaders, wondered why they were not invited but instead the outcasts of the region!
As I released the Word, that God heard their cry and would be their "Husband" if they gave their lives to Him, hope began to fill their hearts! The Pastors and their wives, who usually were over the women's ministries, had expressions like "deer in the headlights" as they received this new concept. As the ladies were fed and given their afternoon tea, it was hard for them to believe they were being honored in this way. The next day there were over 200 widows in attendance, for word had gotten out! Again, I shared the scriptures of what God declares about them! "If God hears your prayers and will establish your territory, ALL of India can be saved!" "You have purpose! You are an asset! You are needed in God's plan!" (Ex 22:23; Isa 54:4,5; Pro 15:25; Eph 1; Jer 29:11)
The widows may have been there for the meal or may have been expected by the other "outcasts" to attend. It reminded me of John chapter five about the combination of ones at the pool Jesus visited. It was the Feast of Pentecost and Jesus made his way to the pool of Bethesda that had five porches. There was a great multitude of people all weak and needing healing.
Bethesda can be translated grace or mercy, but also shame or disgrace. This pool was surrounded by those with sickness, hopelessness, and disgrace. But grace, mercy, and healing were available. It would have been "expected" to be there if you were sick. Just because they were there didn't mean they wanted change. That's why Jesus asked the man if he wanted to be made whole. Jesus told him to pick up his bed and walk. He had a decision. Did he want grace or disgrace? It was Shavuot, Pentecost, a time for change!
We just finished celebrating our Shavuot or Pentecost, which commemorates the anniversary of the day God gave His Holy Word to the entire nation of Israel assembled at Mount Sinai. Pentecost lands on the 50
day after Passover. 50 is the number of jubilee, deliverance and freedom. God brought freedom on Pentecost for that man at the pool! Later, Pentecost happened on the 50th day after Jesus was crucified as our Passover Lamb! It was when the Father sent the Holy Spirit as promised in the book of Acts to speak His Word within us!
The pool had five porches. The fifth porch was divided into two parts. One by the Sheep Gate (for the sacrifices), and a healing pool where the waters were stirred.
All the "Feasts of the Lord" in which Shavuot (Pentecost) is one of them, are called "appointed times" because God has called us to meet with him.
This meeting with "Grace" happened on the Sabbath and on an Appointed Time. Jesus was showing that He was
. They did not have to put their trust in a tradition of the angels stirring the waters. He was greater.
The widows attending our three-day gathering also had a meeting with God. They heard His word about His love for them and about their unique purpose! They had an opportunity to let go of disgrace and the "culture of man" and to move into God's Grace too! We have the same invitation! What is your Bethesda? What expectations do you need to lay aside to pick up your bed and walk? His Grace is sufficient! This is a time for freedom from what has crippled you! Right now, I release to you God's amazing grace to lift you out of the bed of shame and move into your new life of purpose! Just say "YES" to Jesus who was sacrificed for you making this available. Accept His Love for you!
The fourth Sunday every June is National Widows Day! This is a good time to bring awareness of the forgotten army of widows in your churches or gatherings! Feel free to use this link! https://youtu.be/YT-ghYWLyvE or go to www.drcarolmarie.com
Let's all show honor to widows not just June 23rd but all the time....it brings great blessing!