Our Final Post


CherylHello Ishshah’s Story friends,

Have you noticed that God frequently moves in our lives by the principle of seasons?  Just as the coming and going of natural seasons seize our attention with changes in the atmosphere around us – leaves turning from green to red, daylight hours becoming shorter, temperatures rising or falling – so do seasons of the Spirit arrive and depart when God’s purposes for them have been accomplished.

Here at Ishshah’s Story we are sensing just such a seasonal adjustment. Gentle breezes of change re-directing our attention to new areas of priority are causing our editorial team (Cheryl, Nancy, Pat and Charis) to sit up and take note.  It seems to all of us that the time has come to retire Ishshah’s Story so each of us can focus more fully on areas of life and ministry needing deeper investments of time and commitment.

Ishshah’s Story launched in late July 2014. Since that initial posting we have shared around 130 articles from our editorial team and a delightful group of guest posters, always with the desire to encourage, release and motivate God’s daughters into the fullest possible expression of Christ’s Life within them.  We hope that in some way, however long you have journeyed with us, we have done that.

May I here express my gratitude to my three co-editors, who you will hear from briefly below, for their demonstrated commitment to Ishshah’s Story, evidenced by the wonderful articles each one has regularly and wholeheartedly contributed. They are not merely team-members, but faithful friends. Thankyou also to the gifted Melody Lowes who was with us in the early stages and shared her beautiful poetry with us.  To each of you who contributed one or more guest posts, thankyou for enriching the journey for all of us.  And finally, to our small but very supportive group of subscribers, thankyou also for allowing us to walk part of your journey with you.

Remember that you can still connect with each of our editorial team at our personal websites: Pat at Women for the Nations, Nancy at Wellspring of Life, Charis at Subject To Change and me (Cheryl) at Bread for the Bride. Though this is our final post, the Ishshah’s Story blogsite will remain online for a while so you can revisit or share the wide variety of thought-provoking posts available here.

At the end of this post we have shared a recent poem published at Christians for Biblical Equality by Rachel Elizabeth Asproth, entitled A Prayer for Women in 2017.  This too is our prayer for women, not only in 2017, but well beyond.

Cheryl McGrath


Nancy BentzIt has been a privilege to serve on the editing team of Ishshah’s Story. When Cheryl first extended the invitation to prayerfully consider becoming a team member, I received it as a gift from the Lord who sees and knows my heart. He has unwrapped His gift further through those with whom I have written. From His generous and giving heart, the gift deepened in its outflow of opportunity to write to you our readers.

The heart of Jesus for every single ishshah remains open and steadfast. His pure love for women throughout the ages has awakened hearts and transformed lives. When the truth that He places value and worth upon us penetrates our defenses, our life story becomes witness to the power of His redeeming love. To this end I write of matters of the heart and the faithful ways and means of our Beloved through the Person of the Holy Spirit. Though the season with Ishshah’s Story has come to a close in the natural, my heart rejoices with eyes of faith for the fruitful harvest this season will yet yield.

I’ll continue to write for the ministry and coaching blogs, Wellspring of Life and Nancy Bentz, Life Coach related to the ministries my husband and I steward in Spokane, Washington, USA. You are welcome to visit and journey on in this companionship of the Spirit whereby we ishshahs may heal, grow and bloom.

Nancy Bentz


patjoyce2The Lord has a calling for each of our lives.  My calling has been to reach women with the good news that the Bible does not support the theology that restricts women because of gender.

Beginning with God’s Word to Women back in the 90s on through the Women for the Nation’s course, She Shall Be Called Woman, that Cheryl and I wrote and taught, and recently through Ishshah’s Story – a way has been provided to spread the word.  I rejoice to see the tide turning as many ministries, websites and blogs herald the news.

I’ll miss your comments and questions as well as the wonderful fellowship with the editing team but God says move on and, while I don’t know what’s next, I trust the Guide.

Pat Joyce


all thinwhite flower avatar 2x2In the past few years I have seen an acceleration in the things the Lord has been teaching me. He has invited me into experiences with Him and arranged connections with other sisters and brothers in the family of God that I never expected. The result has been a deeper appreciation of His ways, the wonderful unity to be found in the Spirit and the joy expressed in creativity and the diversity of modes of worship.

When people work together it often takes a long time to feel each other out and find a comfortable rhythm. Not so here. I felt immediately at home when I was asked to join the contributing editors. I am so grateful for our international team here at Ishshah’s Story. These are connections that shall go on into eternity. Learning to follow God’s leading means being willing to do so quickly, without argument and without demands to understand everything. One night I heard in a dream “If I tell you where I am going with this, it removes the element of faith.”

So, in faith, we move on, each of us to different assignments. But the connections made here, the truths taught here, the encouragement offered to women here, the love and joy expressed here go on. Bless you all! May we continue to grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Charis Psallo


Woman Sitting Church Religion Concept

A Prayer For Women In 2017 by  Rachel Elizabeth Asproth

God of Hagar, Tamar, and Mary Magdalene
Of Sarah, Rebecca, and Rachel

God of Ruth, Esther, and Rahab
Of the Woman at the Well and the Woman They Would Have Stoned

God of the unseen, unwanted, and unheard

God of the silenced
Of those rendered invisible

God of those who wait
God of those who struggle
God of those who rise

God of the broken
Of the healing and the healed
Of the hopeful and the hopeless

God of the forgotten, who never forgets, we pray

Remember your daughters in 2017

Remember the women who wait—
the women who ache to hear the church call their names,
the women who press their skin against stained glass,
searching frantically for cracks
Remember the women who serve in the shadows,
the women who long to lead,
the hungry women, the thirsty women, the tired women,
the women with a revolutionary Word resting on their tongues

Remember the women who wait

God of Hagar,
remember those who wander the deserts of your church
Open the floodgates and bathe them in hope

May their waiting be over,
because their time has finally come
May the church call their names loudly
May painted glass crack and shatter

Remember the women who survive battles they never asked to fight—
the women with scars and bruises,
and the ones who bleed unseen from the heart,
the women who said no,
and the women who were too afraid to

Remember the women who are violated and hurt
trafficked, assaulted, raped, harassed, and demeaned
the women who walk through fire,
the warriors who rise from the ashes,
scarred but strong

Remember the women who feel broken,
afraid, and alone—
the ones who hold their breath in the night
Because of pain they can’t forget to remember

God of Tamar and Dinah,
God who sees sorrow we can’t name,
remember the women who walk out of the furnace alive
unconsumed by the flames

May your love salve their burns
May your church bind their wounds
May your people see justice done
May survivors be safe in your house

Remember the women who are tired—
the women who labor,
and labor
and labor
unseen in the background of history,
unseen in the church,
unseen by their families
unseen in their workplaces
unseen by their world

Remember the women on the fringes, God of the Woman Who Bled And Was Healed

Remember the women the world loves to forget,
the women who lead nations,
the women who plant churches,
the missionaries, the pastors, and the teachers

Remember the women who love beyond reason,
the women who build their homes brick by brick,
who care for their children and parents without recognition,
the women who carry jugs of water on their heads for miles
and give up their portions so others can eat

God of Naomi,
Remember the women who are tired,
the women who have lost much,
the women who weep and mourn,
who long for brighter days

Meet them in their sorrow,
when the road seems far too long,
and fill them again

Remember the women who are excluded—
dismissed by their own brothers and sisters

Remember, God of the unheard and unseen,
women of color—
betrayed and silenced,
and the women with ten dollars to their names
who ask for help and receive none,
and the women we try to erase
because they speak or dress differently

God of the Samaritan Woman,
remember the women who are excluded
Empower them as only you can

May your church listen better
May your people see justice done
May women of color,
women with disabilities,
women experiencing poverty,
and all women who have gone unheard
be safe in your house
May they be honored in your sanctuaries

Remember the women who fight—
the advocates and activists
the women who turn water into wine,
and then pour it out
Remember the marchers and the sitters
the women who could not and would not be moved

God of Deborah,
remember the women who lead revolutions,
the ones who give up everything
so that others might be free

Remember those who struggle ferociously against the tide
pushing onward,
onward,
onward,
exhausted but ever enduring

May you be the storm at their backs,
a furious wind that drives them through the waves
God of Jael, remember the women who fight.

God of the forgotten, who never forgets, we pray

Remember your daughters in 2017
Remember the women your world loves to forget
Remember the women your church overlooks
Remember the women your people try to erase

Remember your daughters in 2017

Amen

Re-published from the CBE International blogsite.
Advertisements

  9 comments for “Our Final Post

  1. Gail
    January 24, 2017 at 2:05 am

    What a blessing your website has been to me over these last few years. If any of you ever get the urge to write something specific to advocacy for ishshah again, please consider submitting to The Junia Project! http://www.juniaproject.com. Many blessings on your individual ministries.

    Like

    • January 24, 2017 at 11:32 am

      Thankyou Gail. I know that advocacy for Christian women is something that remains dear to each of our four hearts and is a commitment that will not wane for any of us. Personally speaking I would love to take up your offer and hopefully will do so when time allows. Thankyou for your good wishes!

      Like

  2. January 21, 2017 at 1:22 pm

    Thank you for your encouraging and thoughtful posts. We will continue to visit your individual posts for further encouragement. May you continue to know His Love and Peace ever present on your new adventures!
    -Leanne

    Like

  3. January 19, 2017 at 4:42 am

    Wendy, such blessing received in your kind words and expression of gratitude. We all carry on with heads held high, following in the steps of the One we love. Bless you.

    Like

  4. Wendy Bones
    January 18, 2017 at 7:45 pm

    My thanks to all of you for the years of faithful service to the body. You have encouraged, nurtured, fed and brought a depth of understanding of His love and grace. I am reminded of His words in Matt 25:34-35, “Then the King will say to those on His right hand , come you blessed of my Father inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world, for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you fed me, I was a stranger and you took me in.” Not all hunger, thirst and feeling a stranger is in the natural, we have been hungry, thirsty and a stranger and through Ishshahs Story we have been fed, had our thirst quenched and joined with the body. Many, many thanks, all love and His blessings on the next step for each of you.

    Like

    • January 18, 2017 at 9:50 pm

      Thankyou Wendy. I am sure the all of us are greatly encouraged to read your words.

      Like

  5. January 18, 2017 at 1:39 pm

    Thank you, ladies, for sharing your thoughts and stories, scripture studies and lives with us here. Wishing each of you every blessing and increasing fruitfulness in your new (and continuing) endeavors.

    Liked by 1 person

Tell us your thoughts!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: