Posts in the First Free Women Category

Gala in the Garden: Discovering God

Posted onJuly 28, 2017 | by: Jo Coltrain | 0 comments

We expected nothing less. As usual, it was a beautiful evening at Botanica as ladies and girls gathered for the Gala in the Garden on June 28. Probably the most beautiful aspect of our time together, however, was how Debbie Shoberg told her story of...Keep Reading

The TIME at Morning Star Ranch!

Posted onApril 28, 2016 | by: Jo Coltrain | 0 comments

If I had to sum up the STIRRED! Women’s Retreat in one word – other than stirred – it would be TIME! We had the best time! And by best, I mean time for pretty much everything you could want in a women’s retreat. Of course, on one hand, there’s never enough time when you’re with other women, but this retreat made time for some really good things....Keep Reading

An Old-Fashioned Christmas

Posted onDecember 17, 2015 | by: Jo Coltrain | 0 comments

I’d been there earlier in the day, but I’ll never forget the very first time I arrived at night to the Lott’s barn for An Old-Fashioned Christmas. It was wondrous! The smoking fire pots led the way and the huge stone barn appeared as I rounded the corner. It was adorned with beautiful Christmas lights and the lights inside seemed to call to me, “Come, celebrate! Jesus is here.”...Keep Reading

Untainted Love

Posted onJune 30, 2015 | by: Jo Coltrain | 0 comments

The Gala in the Garden was a beautiful event – beautiful gardens, beautiful tables, beautiful food, beautiful music, beautiful smiles. It was a warm event – upper 90s outside, warmer than usual inside, and warm fellowship as ladies and girls enjoyed one another’s company. However, the absolute highlight of the evening was Michelle Romig’s authentic testimony to the incredible, untainted love of the God of the universe....Keep Reading

Why Bible Study?

Posted onSeptember 8, 2014 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

Over 100 First Free women will be gathering on Tuesday mornings and evenings this fall. Why? They’re going to the age-old, tried and true, classic Bible study--we call it Tuesday Connection. For decades, for generations, for hundreds of years, God’s people have gathered in one way or another to engage his Word together. So, why are we gathering around the Word like this? Studying, doing homework, praying through it, talking about it together? Isn’t this a little...“old-fashioned”? I’m sure we could think of several reasons, but there are three we want to focus on this fall. ...Keep Reading

Women's Ministries Summer Reading Picks

Posted onJune 6, 2014 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

Guess what, ladies?! Our church library has some brand new books lined up just for you. Following Pastor Matt’s blog series on reading with discernment, these new books will be a great way to engage what you’ve learned. Check out some new picks by current female authors below! These books are all labeled as a "Women's Ministries Pick" and were added to the library this week....Keep Reading

Pray With Us (Friday)

Posted onFebruary 28, 2014 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

Will you pray with us? The women of First Free are headed off to "retreat" and learn to "press on" together March 7-8! We desperately want this upcoming weekend to be a genuine work of God. Would you commit to pray for our time together? Check back as we will be posting a request each day leading up to the retreat. ...Keep Reading

Pressing On! 2014 Women’s Retreat

Posted onJanuary 6, 2014 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

Coming together as a body of women doesn’t happen every day. I don’t know about you, but I long for those lingering moments when I am with my sisters in Christ. Times when I can pray with them, talk with them, read God’s Word with them, hear God’s Word with them, and sing His praises with them. There’s just something about it. Knowing the loveliness of sisterhood in Christ is...unexplainable....Keep Reading

Harrased, Helpless, and Hassled?

Posted onDecember 13, 2013 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

As the holidays approach, I am remembering how "harassed" and "helpless" I tend to feel during this time of year. With all the shopping, errands, cooking, baking, thinking, planning, making, creating, wrapping, and searching, my insides will churn, my heart will feel tight, and, at 31, I’m probably two shakes away from keeling over in total exhaustion when I get in holiday mode!...Keep Reading

Memorization: An Interview with Michal Rector

Posted onNovember 27, 2013 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

Michal Rector is a young mom who attends Tuesday Connection Bible Study. Here she shares how memorizing God’s Word has impacted her life this semester. What have you been memorizing this semester? The book of Philippians. So far I have chapters 1-3 memorized and I am currently working on chapter 4. What have been motivations for you to begin and continue this endeavor (practical motivations, spiritual, heart needs, struggles, etc)?...Keep Reading

Mothers, Show Them What To Pray

Posted onNovember 22, 2013 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

In his sermon this past Sunday, Pastor Josh mentioned the importance of teaching our children to pray. This can be hard for me, though God grows my passion for prayer more and more. With my own daughter, I often tend to ask her to pray and when she demonstrates insecurity about it, I confess I often brush her insecurity aside and say, “Just talk to him! About anything!” I easily forget how I have been in the same place, and have had to learn--and still have more yet to learn--to pray and dialogue with the Lord....Keep Reading

Memorization: Picturing the Word

Posted onNovember 3, 2013 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

Memorizing God’s Word is a discipline that can easily become a source of pride and an act of duty. To fight this tendency, memorization must be accompanied by meditation. One way this can practically play out is listed in the Women’s Ministry memorization booklets on Philippians....Keep Reading

Memorization: Laying Down Our [In]Security

Posted onOctober 18, 2013 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

I glanced over as slyly, as secretly, and as nonchalantly as I could to the woman sitting next to me. She had an array of Bible study tools out before her. Propped side by side upon the “dash” of the train window was her Bible, her reading book, her Bible study book, her snack, her drink…she was ready....Keep Reading

Memorization: Laying Down Our Rebel Hearts

Posted onOctober 9, 2013 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

“Great is the Lord, and bmmmbsflk mumble jumble...” I heard my daughter say, as we were working on her memory verse for Awana. “Sweetie, I can’t hear you. You need to speak up and speak clearly.” My insides were churning with rising anger while I attempted to keep the tone of my voice patient and kind. I had stated this verse to her dozens of times. I knew she knew it; I could hear her mumbling it, for goodness sake! ...Keep Reading

There Have Been Bad/Good Days Before, Part 2

Posted onOctober 1, 2013 | by: Lindsey Ayres | 0 comments

In the first part of this post, I discussed one extreme response Christians can have to the cultural forgetfulness we see around us: cluelessly submit without examining the implications of how we think and remember. Our corrective to this is to be active rememberers of God’s stories, how he has worked in the lives of men in history....Keep Reading

There Have Been Bad/Good Days Before, Part 1

Posted onSeptember 18, 2013 | by: Lindsey Ayres | 0 comments

In a previous post, I discussed the importance of remembering and retelling God’s stories. Explicitly this includes the stories of the Bible and the Story of the Bible, the story that points to and is Jesus. Also explicitly such storytelling includes the “smaller” ways God works in individuals’ lives like the stories Lori Day told at the Gala. But I would like to add a third kind of storytelling to this...Keep Reading

An Interview on Memorization

Posted onSeptember 13, 2013 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

First Free Women are gearing up to hide God’s Word in their hearts this fall. Here’s an interview with Lindsey Claassen, whose desire to memorize the Word of God is a testimony of God’s faithfulness and goodness to those who are called by his name....Keep Reading

A Plea to Our God

Posted onSeptember 6, 2013 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

Here is one woman’s response to last week’s sermon on Ephesians 1:15-23. May it encourage you in your own response: Father of Glory, Author and Sustainer of Life, It is you who gives me my life, my breath, my being; ...Keep Reading

Finding JOY in Memorizing the Word

Posted onAugust 28, 2013 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

Already anticipating the next women's retreat? Start gearing up for it now, and join First Free Women this fall as we find JOY in memorizing God's Word together! Preparing your hearts and minds now will make you ready to receive powerful truths from the book of Philippians later at the March 7-8, 2014, Women's Retreat. ...Keep Reading

We Are to Be the "Rememberers"

Posted onAugust 13, 2013 | by: Lindsey Ayres | 0 comments

As a creative writing teacher, I think a lot about stories, mostly how to help my students tell them better. But as my preschooler gets older and his attention span for more developed plots gets longer, I also think about what stories to tell him. This idea really hit home for me as I listened to Lori Day speak at the Gala this year....Keep Reading

Stuck in the Mud

Posted onJuly 25, 2013 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

I will venture to say that many of us do not always feel “eager” to become like Christ. We confess our sin and want to be rid of it, but often resist the godly qualities that are supposed to replace those sins. We don’t want to do the work involved. We cling to sin we’ve always believed to be part of our personality--" fear, apathy, temper, worry. We know how to make a pretense of growth with our outward acts and words; all the while, what continues to grow down in our very deepest places, is something quite different. And our contentment with these things keeps us stuck, like feet in mud....Keep Reading

Natives of Heaven

Posted onJuly 3, 2013 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

I never want to be "just like" everybody else. There’s a little piece deep down inside of me that tends to enjoy going against the grain at times (sometimes for the good...sometimes for the bad, I’ll shamefully confess!). You would think, as a believer living in this fallen world, that this “not wanting to be like everybody else” desire in me would help when it comes to being “salt and light” in a dark world that thinks and acts so very differently than me most of the time....Keep Reading

Summer Reading List

Posted onJune 15, 2013 | by: Jane Schaible | 0 comments

Summer’s here! That means lots of spontaneous activity, rather than the regular weekly routines we settle into during the fall and winter months. With all the “free” time we have to “do as we please” during the summer, there is often room for a few new books to add to our reading lists. Here are several “top picks” to add to your summer reading list from the staff. Relax, find your favorite chair in the sun, and enjoy!!...Keep Reading