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Widows bolster SBC causes via Widows’ Might prayer ministry

DALLAS (BP)–The death of a spouse is always difficult, but for a minister’s wife who has served alongside her husband, often for decades, the loss of a spouse also may mean the loss of a ministry. Hundreds of widows, however, have found a way to continue contributing to the Kingdom of God through a prayer ministry sponsored by GuideStone Financial Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention.

The Widows’ Might prayer ministry involves widows who volunteer to pray daily for a variety of special needs pertaining to Southern Baptists’ missions and ministries around the world. Additionally, prayer is offered for needy servants of God who are not widely known and who otherwise might not receive prayer support.

“We often hear from widows who share how blessed they feel to be a part of the Widows’ Might prayer ministry,” said Susie Hawkins, who volunteers her time to lead the ministry. She is the wife of GuideStone’s president, O.S. Hawkins.

“It is a wonderful way for these women to still feel connected to the work of God in the Southern Baptist Convention. Many of them feel isolated, having been active in their church and/or husband’s ministry,” Susie added. “Despite age, illness, loneliness or economic struggles, the women of the Widows’ Might are eager to pray for God’s power to be present in the work of our Southern Baptist Convention.”

Widows’ Might participant Lessie Cumbie of Seymour, Texas, wrote, “Words cannot be put on paper to express how much the Widows’ Might prayer ministry has helped me. I am 82 years old. I moved back to my hometown after my husband went to be with our Lord. I didn’t know what to do. I asked God, and His answer was, ‘You can pray.’”

The Widows’ Might ministry was named for the widow who gave her last two mites to the Lord’s work and whose influence has inspired generous giving on the part of all believers through the ages. In Luke 21:3-4, Jesus praised her because while others gave “out of their abundance … she out of her poverty put in all the livelihood that she had.”

“That spirit of giving is the spirit we want to exemplify in the Widows’ Might,” Susie said. “To give all we have to prayer, asking God to do ‘exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think.’”

“There is a ‘widows’ might’ today in the power of prayer,” said O.S. Hawkins. “The widow who gave her two mites was chosen by Jesus as a model of impacting the world for good. This prayer ministry has the potential of impacting today’s world in ways beyond our comprehension.”

Widows who participate in the ministry receive a Quarterly Call to Prayer, as a means of staying informed on all aspects of Southern Baptist life so they can keep their prayers focused and specific. The quarterly publication lists prayer requests from the International Mission Board, North American Mission Board, Woman’s Missionary Union, Southern Baptist seminaries and SBC entities such as the Executive Committee, LifeWay Christian Resources, GuideStone Financial Resources and the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission.

“Sometimes widows can be ‘pushed into a corner’ and forgotten,” wrote Nell Rittenhouse of Birmingham, Ala. “You have given us a challenged opportunity to continue to serve as best we can.

“What a blessing this has been to have the opportunity to pray for our missionaries and Christian leaders around the world,” Rittenhouse continued. “I thank God for these dear people who are giving of themselves to carry the Good News of Jesus to all people. My heart is burdened for the millions who are lost and unconcerned for their souls.”

Margaret Mullins of Louisville, Ky. wrote, “At my age it seems there is not much I can do. Since I don’t drive anymore, I can’t attend church as I would love to — but I can pray. I realize the power of prayer. My heart is lifted as I pray for the brave missionaries and the souls being saved.

“There is so much trouble in the world,” she continued, “but our God is big enough to save every one who would turn to Him. As we lift our prayers up to Him, we know He hears and answers according to His will. What a great God we serve.”

In addition to the quarterly requests, widows receive reports of answered prayer. “When the ladies get reports of people receiving Christ all around the world, of the Bible being translated into new languages and other wonderful praises from the organizations that submit prayer requests, they know their commitment is making an impact,” Susie Hawkins said.
If you are a widow or know of a widow who would like to be a part of the Widows’ Might prayer ministry, further information can be obtained by contact GuideStone Financial Resources at 1-800-262-0511. Curtis D. Sharp is executive officer for denominational and public relations for GuideStone Financial Resources.

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  • Curtis D. Sharp