The reason you and I exist is to enjoy and exalt God. From the beginning of creation to our new life in Christ, the Bible reveals that we have been designed to be in a daily, life-giving relationship with God.
But what happens when we do not know Him or know how to live out our faith in our day-to-day lives? Our life will lack purpose, meaning, and joy. We will find ourselves restless and life may seem meaningless.
That’s my story.
Early in life, I trusted Jesus for my salvation, but did not know how to trust Him for my everyday life. I pursued what the Western world defined as “success” – degrees, accomplishments, and careers. My shallow faith allowed me to be easily swayed by the trappings of the world. It seemed as though no amount of “success” could fulfill my heart’s desires and I was simply miserable. It was not until going through a season of suffering when God revealed what I had been missing all along—an intimate relationship with Him.
Everything changed when I surrendered my life to Jesus and began to follow Him each and every day. I started reading and studying my Bible and it began to come alive to me. What once seemed like a boring and lifeless chore became vibrant and life-changing.
One of the first things in my life to change was my heart. I wanted to serve Jesus, not out of obligation, but as an overflow of my love for Him. My heart softened for other women, similar to myself, who were searching for more. I wanted them to encounter Jesus as I had. It was during that time that my church invited me to re-start its women’s ministry, but I felt unworthy and insufficient for such a position. Once again, the Bible changed my perspective:
“Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency is from God.”
2 Cor. 3:5
Not long after the women’s ministry launched in 2007, I started participating in short-term missions trips and saw firsthand how women (especially in developing countries) have little to no access to discipleship. Countless women worldwide have never been told that they are loved, valued, or have a purpose.
In many cultures, first-generation Christian women considered “keepers of their religion,” were not allowed to ask questions of men. Women, hungry to learn about Jesus, had no discipleship training. Believers ultimately returned to ancient customs or religious practices because they did not know how to live out their new faith.
One leader in South Asia invited our ministry to host a women’s discipleship conference. In the region where he served, women were not allowed to even look into a man’s eyes. They were considered inferior—marginalized women left questioning how to grow in their new faith and pass it along to the next generation.
When we hosted the women’s discipleship training, we were astounded by the response. Women came by the hundreds; they walked for hours, took long train journeys, slept on concrete floors, and endured suffering to learn about Jesus.
We taught God’s work in them and through them. We focused on God’s story to help them discover their story . . . their purpose . . . their mission. Once they received these truths, their lives changed and they were able to relay and communicate God’s love and promises to their families and communities. One woman shared . . .
“I was told I could not teach because I am blind and a woman . . . Now, I’ve shared the gospel with my family, my in-laws, and all the villages. I learned about grace, how to pray, and I’ve shared all the teaching with others.”
At the end of the conference, we opened it up for questions. The women sheepishly stood one by one to ask what was on their heart:
“Are we allowed to pray during a certain time of the month?”
“How can I share my faith with my family when my husband beats me for being a Christ-follower?”
“My family makes me offer sacrifices to idols and participate in idol worship. What should I do?”
“Since I cannot read, how can I study the Bible?”
The questions were unlike anything we had been asked before. By God’s grace, the Holy Spirit provided wisdom to address each concern. He’s so good to give us the right words when we need them for disciple-making (Luke 12:12).
When the conference was over, my life changed once again. Never would I take for granted that I could read, have access to the Bible, or be safe in my home with my Christian faith.
I originally thought that this disciple-making training opportunity was a once-in-a-lifetime privilege. But, on the same day we landed back in the United States, I received an email asking us to teach the disciple-making conference in South Africa.
Then, East Asia.
Then, Romania . . . and on and on.
All In Ministries International was born. We work with churches and missionaries worldwide to train and equip under-resourced women to be disciples who make disciples of Jesus.
Each time we facilitate the discipleship training, I feel like I witness the Samaritan woman at the well encounter in John 4. Whether it was in the Mayan jungle of Mexico or the Hindu village of South Asia, we saw lives transformed once they understood God’s story and the specific role for which they have been created.
Since 2011, we have traveled around the globe and taught the privileged as well as the poor. No matter where we go, discipleship poverty plagues the church and minimizes the spread of the gospel. Women are oppressed, not knowing who God is, why they were created, or how to live life with Jesus. But once they discover these encouraging truths and are properly equipped to share them with others we have seen . . .
We teach women how to live “all in” – loving God with ALL their heart, soul, mind, and strength. We pray for ALL to know Jesus as Savior and Lord of ALL of their life.
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.”
We’re not alone. In each country, we equip leaders to continue spreading God’s love to a love-starved world. We invest in trainers with coaching calls, training tools, and more. We not only partner with missionaries and churches worldwide, but we also offer free online training to anyone seeking these timeless truths.
Earlier this year, we self-published a Bible Study for new and growing believers worldwide entitled, Your True Story: The 50-Day Essential Guide to Your New Life With Jesus. Saturated with Scripture, our Christian handbook/disciple-making field manual covers faith essentials for women and men with no Western examples or stories.
The book is sold on Amazon “Buy One, Gift One,” meaning for every copy sold, a copy is provided free of charge to an under-resourced believer in a developing country. 100% of the net profits go toward ministry. More info here: www.yourtruestorybook.com
If you are looking to be discipled or disciple others, I invite you to go online to access our free tools or to pick up a copy of the Bible study. I’m so grateful for ministries like Truth Republic to help us fulfill our purpose of enjoying and exalting God—to become all God created us to be ALL for His Glory.
We are . . . All In. You can be, too. Let’s work together for God’s glory alone.
Author, Susan Freese
Founder of All In Ministries International