This Resource Wednesday I'd like to share with you about a ministry called Bright Lights (http://www.brightlights.info/). It is a ministry set up with the aim of discipling/mentoring (in Christianity) young girls ages 10-13.
Here's an excerpt from the Bright Lights website explaining how this ministry began and how it has grown into a thriving ministry today:
Bright Lights began in May of 1996. Sarah Mally, a seventeen-year-old at the time, was concerned about the spiritual walk of many young ladies she knew. The Lord gave her the desire to begin a discipleship ministry in order to share with these girls some of the things the Lord had taught her. She decided to call the group Bright Lights. BRIGHT stands for Being Radiant In Godliness, Holiness, and Testimony.
Sarah sent out brochures to several young ladies she knew, inviting them to come to Bright Lights. This wasn’t a group of just fun and games—it was a group for girls who were serious about spiritual things and desiring to be challenged in their walk with Christ. Initially, she invited the most mature girls she knew in order to establish a core group that would cultivate positive peer pressure. Sarah wasn’t sure how many to expect, but word spread and soon about thirty girls were coming. It was encouraging to see these girls making personal commitments to read God’s Word each day, to honor their parents, to keep a clear conscience, to minister to their brothers and sisters, and to shine their light brightly for the Lord!
In the spring of 2001, Sarah decided to organize a Bright Lights conference in order to involve her “older girls” in leadership and give them an opportunity to teach. The girls in her group were growing and Sarah wanted to give them more experience in ministry—knowing that when you teach others, you are the one who grows the most! She and these girls had already been praying that the Lord would give them, as a group, opportunities to reach more young ladies. By teaching a conference, Sarah hoped to accomplish two things at once: reach more younger girls and give the older girls in her group important ministry training. The first “Strong in the Lord Conference” was held in May, 2001. Through skits, testimonies, stories, and small group teaching, they covered topics such as being strong for the Lord in your youth, keeping a clear conscience, giving your heart to your parents, and making brothers and sisters best friends.
Sarah and the Bright Lights staff have also had the opportunity to train many other young ladies to begin Bright Lights groups in their own areas. There are now about 350 Bright Lights groups that have started in 38 states and 8 countries. The Lord recently provided an office building for the Bright Lights staff in Marion, Iowa where they continue to develop new resources for Bright Lights groups and mothers and daughters.
The Bright Lights conferences mentioned above are held a couple times a year (often in Iowa and Minnesota). The Strong in the Lord conference is geared toward young girls ages 8-14. My niece, Emily, and I are attending one of these conferences (in Duluth, MN) today.
I recommend checking out the website and the material available for discipling young girls.
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