While certainly rewarding, the life of a spouse in the mission field can be lonely and isolating at times. Consider living in a foreign city, with little to no personal connections, and settling into a new lifestyle, it can be frightening and uncomfortable. This is why it’s extremely important to support those in mission work, as well as their families. Whether through fellowship, shared meals, workshops or prayer, everyone can and should support those fulfilling the Great Commission.
In July, Melanie Ratcliffe, an Evangelism Strategist for the South Carolina Baptist Convention, traveled to Salt Lake City, Utah with one goal in mind: to encourage the wives of the city’s church planters. Ratcliffe traveled with four other women from around the state, all of them bringing unique experiences in women’s ministry. With a well-rounded team of women, the group prayerfully embarked on their journey to Salt Lake City, one of the North American Mission Board’s identified SEND cities.
While there, the team hosted a discipleship conference for church planters’ wives, shared many meals together, and hosted a hiking trip for fellowship and encouraging conversation. Throughout the week, the women spent time listening to one another’s struggles and celebrations, and shared their passion for reaching those far from God within their city. Ratcliffe says the trip was incredibly successful and the SCBC team was blessed by the time they spent in Salt Lake City.
To further support this group of church planters’ wives, here are a few ways you can pray for them and their efforts:
- These wives face extreme loneliness in Salt Lake City due to 70% of the population being LDS. Pray that the believers in the city can find time to encourage and support one another.
- Pray for the people they are in relationship with who do not know the Lord. Pray that their eyes will be opened to their sin and need for Jesus.
- There are two new church plants in Northern Utah that need prayer. One in particular is in the difficult early stage of planting and is learning just how hard it can be.
- The SEND city wives retreat in October. Pray that it would be a refreshing and encouraging time for the women who can attend.
This trip was a direct result of the mission partnership that South Carolina Baptists have developed with church planting leaders in Salt Lake City. If you would like to be a part of a vision tour to Salt Lake City with the prayer of developing a mission partnership there, feel free to contact the SCBC Missions Mobilization team about that possibility.
To discover more about SEND cities and ways to partner, visit www.namb.net/focus-areas/.