Joy with her husband, Don
On Wednesday mornings I meet with a group of gals that are my friends. They also are sincere "friends of God" and know Him well, in the dark, secret places where no one else can help. It is my favorite meeting of the week: Lady's prayer.
Without my meetings with these women I would have lost my mind here in South Africa. In the early days of my move they were the ones I cried to, grieved with and told my greatest fears to. They prayed earnestly for me, and encouraged me with words of knowledge, wisdom and prophetic insight.
The leaders' name is Joy, my friend who used to be the secretary at church. She calls herself a granny to most of the kids at church, but she's mostly noted for being outspoken, and prophetic to the spot. Over the years I've come to see her as a chaser of God's will, like an Olympic Sport.... and a good friend who loves me despite all of my warts. She hosts the group in her home, and usually steers us in the pattern we are going to pray. We have danced with flags, prayed through nations, meditated then personalized scripture...and even walked malls in an effort to find sick people and pray for them. Sometimes I'm not up for anything but sitting in the sun and praying with my friends, but Joy usually destroys my comfort zones in a desire to dance before our daddy together. She is an incredibly, creative leader.
Stella is the eldest member of our group, but a pistol and a star to all of us. Jewish by birth, she made a decision for Jesus and never looked back. Because of her background she knows a lot of Biblical prophecy and tradition, but because of her love for Jesus she knows even greater riches. A delight and a twinkle, Stella loves greeting me with a holy kiss that makes me feel loved and cherished. What a pistol!! She can teach me from any story she chooses to tell.
Lena is an Afrikaans woman who is close in age to Joy; mother of one of my favorite people in South Africa, David. She is also quite outspoken, but mostly is known for her wit and knowledge of things both deep and trivial. Also one to press closely to God, she's endured the winds of change in South Africa for years, being content that God is the only one who doesn't change. She and Mike, her husband serve on eldership at Junction, so we see each other quite a lot. Inside of Lena is an authority that is filled with God's justice...which makes me listen to her.
Rebecca is a transplant from England and a doctor. She also loves the anointing and the manifest presence of God, making her quite giddy at the shadows and whispers of Him that we see. She lives for healing in the supernatural, so she and Joy have spear-headed a plan to have healing rooms in our new building. Rebecca is the mother of four children and loves her husband and kids, which makes me flashback to those days of my own growing up... She is a delight and the first English person I have been good friends with...so I have hope that they all don't hate Americans!
Denise is the most tender, open-hearted daughter of the king. She encourages me with a smile, or a word literally every time I see her. Like all of us, she prays with fervor and complete dependency for God to move or else we have no hope. Her gentleness and wisdom are also accompanied by organizational skills, making her be the one who not only gets prophetic vision to do something, but carries it through to be done. Because of her we began praying at a local police station before their morning meetings (unheard of here!) with a few outside of our prayer group. I love her encouragement when things go very wrong for us. She comforts me with the care and comfort that can only come from someone who has been through it all.
Gladys is a supermodel...who is also as encouraging and prophetic as she is gorgeous. When I first met Gladys she spent extra time with me to talk and get to know me. She has a way of making everyone feel as if they are the only person in the room, as well as being fun and funny and delightful, making you want to seek her out when you get to a meeting. She also has grown children and grandkids, so relates to my position in life well. Because of her desire to pray scripture, her light during the Wednesday morning meetings makes us all grateful...
Then there's Helen. She is the one who is our tender warrior as I say. Glowing with light and grace, Helen delivers a vision with so much gentlesness, it is like a cloud floating into our midst. Blonde and polished, at first meeting you have to know this person is not just a Bergdorff's model, but a sincere daughter of God who wants with all of her heart to do His will, minister to the poor and be a friend. I can't help comparing Helen to my own mother, a graceful, glowing girl as well. I love her more because of this comparison, even though Helen is not old enough to be my mom.....
At times Trish will join us, a local artist who prays on her knees and prophesies openly without fear... I have grown to love her, too.
I've grown to love and value all of them. When I come into the room, Joy is there with her spiral notebook and the rest of the girls with their Bibles and coffees. They all look up at me and greet me (I am usually late) and we begin by asking for prayer for this, prayer for that, etc.
That is, unless we’re going to the mall that day and we’re going to pray for people to get saved.
My favourite meeting of the week.... and full of all of my favourite gals here. My friends; my prayer partners.