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She Challenged Me

August 8, 2013

I was feeling sorry for myself. I try not to make a habit of this. Actually, I really challenge myself to keep things in perspective, remain fairly positive, and resist all pity parties.

But sometimes I get tired.

And feel pulled in one too many directions.

You ever been there?

A few weeks ago, I was there when I met Hannah from Africa. She had saved up her money for three years to come to She Speaks. She spent four days traveling to the conference. She’d spend four more days traveling home. That’s eight days traveling for a two day conference.

As Hannah told me about these and other things she had to overcome to be with us, there wasn’t a hint of any other emotion but sheer joy.

It was her joy to wait for three years.

It was her joy to save her money.

It was her joy to travel eight days.

Why? Because it is her joy to serve Jesus. And she realizes in the face of all He has given us, our sacrifices to serve Him simply pale in comparison.

To say I was challenged by her exuberant presence and perspective is an understatement.

“Hannah, how did you press through your challenges with such a sweet confidence?” Me, the teacher, had become the student.

“It’s the cost of the call,” Hannah smiled, hugged me, and was on her way. I sat speechless.

Her words have continued to linger in my life. I’ve heard them over and over these past two weeks when I’m on the edge of feeling like something is hard or nearly impossible.

The challenges? The cost of the call.

The need to balance a lot of things? The cost of the call.

The stretching past my comfort zone? The cost of the call.

Not only have I felt challenged by the cost of the call, I’ve thought about the responsibility of the call as well. There are thousands of Hannahs that need to be reached. These Hannahs are women with spheres of influence who are desperate for the kind of Bible study teaching many of us take for granted.

So, I just started thinking about how we can help these women.

My team at Proverbs 31 Ministries is very committed to taking Jesus’ life changing truths into all the world. We want to invite you to help us. If we step up to help ease the cost of the call, I believe more women will be able to heed the call.

We have the avenues to reach these women. Just this week, we launched an online Bible study that is reaching over 22,000 women in over 120 countries. There are only 194 countries in the world! Amazing, hunh? Yes, we have the way to reach them. But we need friends who can be our financial partners to reach them.

Every gift counts. Every gift is an answer to prayer. Every gift matters.

For more information on how you can partner with some of the strategic ways Proverbs 31 Ministries is meeting these urgent needs, click here.

ihelpedgotoher

Thank you friend. Thank you for caring. Thank you for stepping into the cost of the call.

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23 Comments
  1. Chris Carter

    Wow. Just wow. Thank you for this reminder… and my new mantra. We fail oh too often to realize so many challenges we don’t have to face. I am depleted in my own little world, and yet- do I know how blessed I am? Apparently not.
    I heart you Lysa. I heart you Hannah!!!
    May God truly bless Hannah, for her amazing faith and joy in the journey.

    Reply
  2. Chris Carter

    YAY!! I was the number ONE commenter!! (not 458ish) Woohoo! Having a little party over here now… 🙂
    It pays to stay up really really late… lol

    And now perhaps I am number TWO too! Okay- I’ll stop.

    Reply
  3. Sharon Sloan

    I love Hannah and I don’t even know her. 🙂 Her joy to serve Jesus. The cost of the call. The truth she spoke will reverberate in my heart…I hope always.

    And a great teacher is always an excellent student first. 🙂 God is so good. Thankful for sweet Hannahs in all of our lives. God bless Hannah today in such a tangible and personal ways.

    Hannah has the joy. She quietly sacrifices the cost. She knows the secret.
    “I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” – Phil. 4:11-13

    Reply
    • Tatiana

      AMEN!

      Reply
  4. Stela

    Yesterday I learned I’m a seed out of a packet, it was confirmed today when I read about a watermelon seed. The seed is small & hard yet, it grows to much bigger than its size, with many layers, a beautiful outside that looks painted on, a thick white rind, juicy red deliciousness & black seeds. Beautiful. But it starts so small & hard yet watermelons are so big. The cost of the call will start small from my home but by the time it reaches P31 it will grow into a mighty sequoia (sp?) & will take care of many. Thank you Jesus & thank you Lysa. #PalmsUp =)

    Reply
  5. Stacey Thacker

    Sweet Hannah was in my speaking group with LuAnne.

    Her story grabbed my heart.
    When she spoke, we all leaned in to listen.
    God is doing great things through her!

    Reply
  6. Lelia Chealey

    This made me cry. God has used P31 to forever change me and to know He’s not limited to reaching women just in the USA is so amazing. What a great God!!

    Reply
  7. Pamela Smyth

    Amazing. Even though we try to be grateful for what The Lord has done in our lives, we will never really know living in America what people in third word countries have to go through. What a blessing it was to read about Hannah.

    Reply
  8. Kelly Williams Hale

    Oh man, what a wonderful reminder that it is not always going to be easy, all flowers and light when we respond to Jesus. The cost of the call may be financial, physical, mental – or all 3 at the same time! Thank you Lysa, for sharing this post today and reminding us that we may get tired and want to throw in the towel but the cost of the call is TOTALLY WORTH IT! God bless sister 🙂 xo Kelly

    Reply
  9. Lisa M

    I too had the privilege of meeting Hannah a few weeks ago in a Break out session. I noticed her because she was absorbing everything that was happening around her. When she told me her story I was so humbled. It cost her everything to come to this conference and yet she was so thankful and joyful. To me she wore the face of courage and I am so grateful to God that He allowed me to see a glimpse of Him in this precious daughter.

    Reply
  10. Susan Greenwood

    “The cost of the call.” This reminds me of what you (Lysa) said at the She Speaks Intensive, “The process is the point.” It is selfish and prideful to love and desire outcomes and hate the process or the cost of the call. It’s like desiring Heaven and hating the walk with Jesus here on earth. I love this post. It speaks to my heart. Thank you for sharing Hannah with me today!

    Reply
  11. Katrina Wylie

    “The cost of the call.” What a powerful statement and one that is so relevant in my life right now. I love your passion for reaching women Lysa. It inspires me to want to do more and be more for God. Thank you for following through on your promise to God to help the women coming behind you to reach more women for God. May He bless you abundantly.

    Reply
  12. Kelli Domroes

    Meeting Hannah at She Speaks was a highlight of the conference for me. She was scanning the book table and I felt such a Holy Spirit pull toward her. Her quiet, joyful demeanor was inspiring, as was her desire to overcome such obstacles to learn more about teaching others about Christ. She was taking this information to an entirely different country! It made me examine my life and question how far I am willing to go to answer God’s call.

    Reply
  13. Elaine Turk

    I have a Hannah from Africa that changed my life also. About 4 years ago I was blessed to go to Ghana with my church on a mission trip. Hannah was pregnant, unwed, her family had all died within one year of illesses, and was homeless. God did an amazing miracle for her–after bringing her out of the water during a water baptism, God told me to speak to her. he used me to tell her He loved her, she is not alone, to call on Him morning, noon, and night…and had me repeat it to her. A few days later we were told that Hannah had previously tried suicide, and had a few days before being baptised went to a doctor to take a pill to abort her baby. The baby had not moved since–but immediately after baptism, the baby moved and lived. The team paid for a sonogram…when I went to say goodbye before going back to NY State, she told me (another miracle as she could not have been able to speak English) that she “saw her baby’s fingers and toes”. God shocked all of our missionary team…He did the impossible.!!!

    Reply
  14. Melanie @ carmelmoments.com

    That is an amazing story. It’s all in our perspective. She was overjoyed that she was there. Not disheartened about how long it took her to get there. We can all learn a lesson from Hannah. I’m sure Jesus just pours out of her.

    Reply
  15. Jenny Humphrey

    The cost of the call! And here Ive been over the past few days asking myself and God….’what am I doing here God?’ I’m in Zimbabwe & have been for the past 2 1/2 years. Australia is my homeland. I didn’t go to my workplace today…. instead I went to an orphanage where there are 20+ babies & small children (orphaned & abandoned) He answered my cry today…..’why am I here?”……. it’s to minister His love & grace to these precious children. Tonight we have a precious little girl (from the babies home) staying with us…until she went to sleep just a short while ago…. she was singing about Jesus! “Thankyou Lord…. I’ll gladly pay the cost of the call”

    Reply
  16. Anne S

    Hannah is an inspiration. I felt privileged to be a part of her speaker’s group because we too were reminded of the cost of the call. Never was she upset during those several years that she waited to come to She Speaks, she just trusted that it wasn’t time. I love that about Hannah! What a blessing to meet her!

    Reply
  17. Lori Hearn

    Amen, Lysa. Just a few short weeks ago, I spent two weeks traveling to 6 locations in Kenya sharing God’s word with close to 400 Maasai women, some of which walked over 10 miles one way to hear God’s word…after waking at 5am to milk their cows/goats and doing their chores…with a baby strapped to their back and one or two in tow. They are hungry to know God on a deeper level and know His word but most cannot read and have little to no access to Bible study. So…thank you and God bless you for your determination to open up a way for women to grow in Christ!!!!

    Reply
  18. sonyamacdesigns

    This is how my young country pastor explained the COST of the Call to me. It’s biblical y’all … Praise Time N Tennessee!

    While he was in Bethany, reclining at the table in the home of Simon the Leper, a woman came with an alabaster jar of very {expensive perfume} made of pure nard. She broke the jar and poured the perfume on his head.

    Some of those present were saying indignantly to one another, “Why this waste of perfume? It could have been sold for more than a {year’s wages} [a] and the money given to the poor.” And THEY rebuked her harshly.

    Leave her alone,” said Jesus. “Why are you bothering her? She has done a beautiful thing to me. The poor you will always have with you,[b] and you can help them any time you want. But you will not always have me. {She did what she could}. She poured perfume on my body beforehand to prepare for my burial. Truly I tell you, wherever the gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.”

    Reply
  19. Jacque M.

    Thank you so much for all that you do. Your God-inspired words speak to me every time I read your blog, devotionals, and books. You are a very talented writer. Thank you for responding to the Lord’s call on your life and using your gift to minister to others.

    Reply
  20. Sue Detweiler

    “Not only have I felt challenged by the cost of the call, I’ve thought about the responsibility of the call as well.”

    Lysa,
    I want to thank you and the Proverbs 31 team for answering God’s call and paying the price. I was deeply impacted by the She Speaks Conference. I loved the powerful display of relational integrity of the team of speakers and authors. My primary goal for the conference was to build relationships for the future.

    After serving in pastoral ministry for many years, I began having the same type of dream every night for 6 weeks. I would dream that I had a baby, twins, an abandoned child… The last dream I had after 6 weeks of the same message was of me as a mom filled with breast milk which was dripping down to the ground. We already have 6 children (2 adopted) and we didn’t feel called to have any more… But we sensed God saying that He was making me to be a spiritual mom to MANY children around the nations and that I needed to resign my role as an associate pastor where I served for over 15 years. It takes a long time to walk through obedience to the call when you have the cost to let go of the past in order to lay hold of HIS future. She Speaks was part of my journey of embracing HIS future.

    THANK YOU TO YOU AND YOUR TEAM for saying YES to God’s call to pour God’s wisdom into women around the world and to lead women in the adventure of faith.
    May God bless each of you abundantly,
    Sue Detweiler

    Reply
  21. Misty Foster

    Thanks for sharing this beautiful story and amazing testimony. Such a poignant reminder, whatever Christ calls us to lay aside, pick up, tear down, overcome, step up to, step out in is all the cost. It’s worth it and we redeem far more in glory to the kingdom than we ever lose. Thanks for my first experience at She Speaks and your faithfulness in your calling.

    Reply
  22. Heather

    Lisa, I didn’t know where to write you at so I’m hoping you get this! This year has been one heck of a year for my husband and I both. I have Fibromyalgia, R.A., Chronic Fatigue and a handful of other auto immune diseases. I got off of 9 different medications (including morphine) at the first of this year. 3 months of serious withdrawals. Well, the problem was, all of these raw emotions came out of nowhere and it has been something else. I just recently started to read your book, “Unglued.” It has been the best thing ever and I’m only on the second chapter! I have hope now and don’t feel alone and I want to thank you so much for that! Blessings, Heather

    Reply
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