Jenny* was 35 and planning to move to live among a Muslim people group in Southeast Asia with her family as missionaries. The whole family was in the car, driving to get trained by All Nations before they left. It was cold enough that she was forced to wear socks and shoes on the drive. She loved flip flops, and looked forward to getting to wear them year-round in Asia.
As they drove, she noticed a thought of self-hatred rolling through her mind. She sighed. No matter how free her toes might feel in flip flops, she couldn’t make herself feel comfortable and free in her own skin. She felt deflated.
These self-destructive thoughts came to her often, and she couldn’t get rid of them. She felt stuck and hopeless.
She wanted to be a missionary, but how could she share Jesus’ love with others when she felt so condemned herself? She had tried everything she could on her own. She needed help – for Jesus to intervene, and maybe some coaching or counsel from others.
“Will I get any help at this training?” she wondered.
In the final week, Jenny was surprised to realize there was a full day scheduled to engage in healing prayer with a coach. She struggled between hope and doubt. Nothing else was working. Could God use this day, this coach, these prayers, to remove her self-destructive thoughts?
The day arrived. The coach guided Jenny through questions for Jesus and herself. Nothing out of the ordinary happened, but as Jenny stared at her shoes at the end of the day, waiting in prayer, she felt lighter. She also felt equipped, as she now had steps and questions she could use to bring her hurts to Jesus on her own in the future.
The final days of training revealed her miracle: she no longer had self-destructive, harmful thoughts entering her mind. Jesus had freed her!
In the months and years to come, Jenny felt the effects of this emotional healing.
She found she had more resilience in marital challenges she and her husband faced the first year in Asia. She also stepped into significant ministry to other women by offering them the same kind of healing prayer she had experienced.
She has left her flip flops at the front door and done healing prayer with Muslim women in halfway houses and safe houses. Jenny has prayed with brand new Muslim background believers, and with young Christian background believers who are committing their lives to follow Jesus to the remote parts of her country.
The Father brings clarity to these women, gives them hope, and many experience receiving a word or picture from Jesus for the first time. Almost every woman has left those sessions with renewed hope and a sense of being loved by Jesus.
These women do not have the same pastoral care available to them that Jenny received at her training. It is her joy to pass on to them the healing and prayer she received, so that Jesus can intimately engage each of their stories.
The journey never ends. Jenny says, “Soul care is not just one encounter bringing freedom, but a continual journey of allowing Jesus to heal my heart from the struggles of everyday life. As I stay healthy, I am able to continually pour into those around me.
I consider these women from a very unreached people group, who are personally encountering Jesus, to be some of the beautiful fruit that Jesus bears through me as I abide with Him and receive His care.”
*Names & details in this story were changed for security
All Nations is thrilled to have women and men like Jenny all over the world.
- They have tools and people to lean on to return to health.
- They are committed to and trained in abiding with Jesus and multiplication.
- And because generosity and creating life that flourishes and multiplies is at the core of who God is, they bear fruit that multiplies when they abide in Him (Jn 15:5).
Would you make a difference in the lives of missionaries like Jenny, and through them, in neglected people around the world? Join us at Further Together 2023: Abide & Multiply on September 14, 2023. Partner with us to recruit, train, and care for healthy, abiding missionaries who will plant multiplying churches among neglected peoples.