Forget about what’s happened;
don’t keep going over old history.
Be alert, be present. I’m about to do something brand-new.
It’s bursting out! Don’t you see it?
Isaiah 43:18-19 MSG

I’ve always loved a new beginning. When I was little I loved the thrill of opening a brand new Big Chief tablet, as the long, lazy days of summer segued to the beginning of a new school year full of possibility. In adulthood, that has transferred to opening fresh pages of my life, yet unwritten, at the beginning of a new year.

New things are God’s specialty. It’s amazing to me how He can weave together willing people’s lives and interests to create an incredible new thing – beyond anything we could ever dream up – to bring hearts together for His glory. The Master Weaver has been mighty busy over the last year, weaving my life together with another through the wonder that is the Internet, to start a new thing in 2010. It’s my over-the-top joy to introduce you to her and to what God is doing!

Meet Mary Snyder. Many of you know her as “Mary R. Snyder”. Or Mary R. Or Mary. It’s been my experience that she answers to all of the above! Mary and I met through blogging, began to email some, then through some “God-maneuvers,” ended up rooming together in Atlanta last January at Travis Cottrell‘s live recording. It was one of those wonderful, instant “heart connections,” allowing us to discover that we both had a love of women’s ministry, friendships and the role that social media can play in both.

God began weaving in us both, separately, threads of thought for a new ministry. Months later, Mary was looking for a ministry partner, while in the meantime, I’d been considering a partnership to bring some of my thoughts to fruition. The Lord brought us both to the other’s mind, leading us to talk and discover that our ministry ideas were almost exactly the same!

So, it is my joy to present to you our “new thing”:

gIRL: Girlfriends In Real Life
meeting God together on the other side of the screen

This will be a ministry that brings the friendships that we forge through blogging, Facebook, Twitter, and other social media, from one side of the screen to the other…not just for a quick lunch or a quick “meet-up” after a conference, but for extended time together with God. We believe that God is calling us to deeper relationships founded on our relationship with Him, and that He is using social media to bring people together all over the world to achieve just that. We’re excited and humbled that He would be using us for this purpose!

We are in the process, now, of preparing for our first strategy meeting with possible ministry partners, where we will share our vision for gIRL. To our delight, God recently provided our first partner, Karen Barrows – through social media, no less! She has provided a wonderful location for the strategy meeting and is working with us toward launching the first full-fledged gIRL event, hopefully later this year.

We’d love it if you would put us on your ministry prayer list for 2010, that God would continue to reveal to us how He wants this ministry to look and function, and that, above all, it would bring women to Him and glory to His name!

“A new thing…it’s bursting out, don’t you see it?”

It’s God’s specialty…we’re so blessed to be along for the ride!!