I'm Excited for a New Year in Missions!

This week, my GAs will be back in our classroom, reciting our pledge, and learning about missions work happening in Kansas City, Missouri. Because we only have GA and RA during the school year, the summer months (while hectic) seem to be missing a bit of excitement, activity, and inspiration as our room sits empty each Wednesday night. When I see the girls during the summer, they want to know where I traveled and whom I met and when we are starting back—because they miss GA.

What they're telling me isn't that they miss me during the summer. They don't miss our wall map showing locations of missionaries we've studied. They don't miss our pledge or my somewhat mediocre storytelling skills. They don't even miss the badges and the projects. What they're telling me is that they've missed the love of our church family.

Our Wednesday night activities are flooded with children from our community who don't often attend church anywhere on Sunday mornings. While we feed them supper, play games, and sometimes help with homework, these children are in a safe place while learning about our God Who loves them so much. They feel that love from the adult volunteers, the church staff, and each other. We are building a community.

I'm excited to see my girls this week and to hear stories of the first week of school. A few hugs and a bit of excitement later, we'll settle down to our pledge and this month's Bible verse. We'll take turns sharing with our new first-graders about the different parts of our pledge and what we learn in GA each week. We'll remind each other of the neat things we did last year and the things we want to do this year. We'll read through the prayer calendar and remind ourselves why we pray for missionaries and what it means to be a set of initials listed on this calendar. We'll close in prayer, and most of the girls will each say a sentence prayer. I'll silently praise God for helping these girls get to a place where they can each pray out loud. And then, before we leave for the night, I will remind them:

“In case you haven't heard this today, I want you to know that you are loved. You are special. You are made in God's image, and He loves you so very much. And so do I.”

As they burst out of the room, a few will remember to give me a high five and a few will give me a hug. But, they will all have heard that they are loved by me, and more importantly, by God.

As you lead GA, RA, or CA this month, my prayer for you is that the children you are entrusted with will know how much God loves them because of their time with you.


Heather Keller is the GA and CA consultant at national WMU. When she and her husband aren't traveling to their son's football games, they enjoy camping and s’mores. She is thankful for campfires, school starting back, and great friendships.


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