All Posts By

Melody Workman

Cultivate Truth

Jesus… what do YOU say?

 

Hey friends!

One of the 2016 highlights for Cultivate was our Fall Marketplace & Gathering. Over 1600 women came together not only to shop with a cause (each of the 35 vendors donated 10% of their proceeds to an organization that directly impacts women in a positive way), but to fellowship and worship together too! Not to mention the generosity that was cultivated through our offering~ which enabled us to provide financial support to the Dressember campaign to fight human sex trafficking, as well as help support relief efforts in Aleppo.  It was truly an incredible night.

I shared a message that night called, “Jesus… What do YOU say?”  This message tells the story of the woman caught in the act of adultery who was brought before Jesus. It is one of my favorite stories about Jesus because it reveals to us so powerfully what the heart of God really is towards all of us…regardless of who we are, what we’ve done, what labels we carry around, or what has been done to us. It affirms to us that we can know without a doubt that we are deeply loved by the God who made us.

As we move into this new year there are so many hopes, dreams, and goals that fill our hearts and minds. We will be easily swayed and discouraged if we are not convinced of who we are to God, and how He feels about us.  This is why it’s absolutely necessary that we continually ask, “Jesus… what do YOU say?

This year we want you to continually/intentionally cultivate the truth that Jesus loves YOU!  Be encouraged. Be reminded. Be reassured. You are loved- deeply, completely, and wholly. He will never change His mind about you.

Much love,

Melody

 

Cultivate Justice

Melody

Isaiah 1:17

“Seek Justice.

Help the Oppressed.

Defend the cause of Orphans.

Fight for the rights of Widows.”

 

I read these verses, like many others and think to myself, “yes, I should do those things. Those things are important.” But in the comfort and convenience of my life, how important are they really? What is interesting about these verses is that earlier in the chapter, God is rebuking Israel because of their religious acts that are void of any real meaning. They are basically going through the motions and God is tired of it. They are doing and saying all of the right things, but those things are empty, easy and not at all what God really desires.

It doesn’t take long to realize that in many ways the American church of today resembles many of these same characteristics. We know how to put on a rockin’ concert, conference or worship service. We know how to use social media to promote the “next best thing” coming out in our Christian sub-culture. We know how to tweet verses and sermon highlights. Actually we KNOW a lot.

 

A few years ago, God started doing some unraveling in me and His question to me was simply this:
“Melody, what are YOU doing with what YOU know?”

 

I began a personally painful journey that revealed to me that I was basically a Consumer in the Kingdom of God but not much of a Contributor. Anyone could look at my life and conclude that I talked about Jesus a whole lot but most my life revealed that I didn’t care too much about the things nearest and dearest to His heart.

A closer look at the life and ministry of Jesus reveals a Man who spent his time with the marginalized, the least popular, the poorest and the most forgotten. Those were the people He saw, gravitated to, healed and spent time with. When it came to the religious leaders, the ones who should have been modeling what “true religion” looks like…well, he had words for them too but they weren’t very warm and fuzzy.

What I am convinced of is that to truly love Jesus is to love the things He loved and to do the things He did. This can be uncomfortable, inconvenient and messy. It means standing up for things, fighting for people, giving to organizations and being on the front lines of causes that REALLY matter. Because here is the deal: If we won’t then who will?

This is why I care about Dressember. This is why I believe in its mission – because as the Church awakens to the horrific truth of human trafficking and rises up to fight for the millions of women and children who are enslaved, WE become the voice, the hands and the feet of Jesus. We become His ambassadors.

Dressember for me is about coming together as a community of women around the world who are saying to our sisters in bondage: WE SEE YOU. WE ARE FIGHTING FOR YOU. With every dollar Dressember raises, another woman and child move towards freedom. Every day organizations like A21 and International Justice Mission are rescuing and rehabilitating our sisters AND prosecuting the ones who enslaved them. This is the work of redemption. This is the work of justice.

 

This is the work of Jesus.

 

And I am a Jesus follower so it must be my work as well.

 

-Melody Workman