When The Light Goes On

Emmaus Ministries.

In the eyes of the world at large we are very small. In the eyes of the world we are very foolish.

You want to do what?

Equip the body of Christ with the Word of God.

You moved from how far away to be here in Florida?

From North Carolina, Georgia, Michigan, and Colorado.

Why would you do that? Why would you leave family and friends, homes and financial stability to run a school whose average attendance has been nine people every year? Why would you "risk it all"?

Allow me to explain...

There are moments when I truly feel alive. It's not skydiving or driving really fast or bull riding that makes me feel this way

(none of which I have any desire to do)

. For me, the times when I truly "feel alive" are when I open up my Bible, look into tired eyes, and watch the Holy Spirit turn the lights on inside the people facing me.

Those moments make me want to cry and laugh and throw my hands in the air!

But instead I watch quietly in humble awe of what I see the Lord doing.


words are not what turn those lights on, it's


Word coming alive for the very first time that switches on the light.

Over the past few months we've been teaching Inductive Bible Seminars at different churches in the Orlando area. Last night I wrapped up a study on Titus and at the end I asked the people there how Inductive Bible Study had changed their view of Scripture or their relationship with the Lord or even their view of themselves. One lady, around 80 years old, told me that she'd always read her Bible, but the last few months have been the first time she's ever studied it and understood what she's reading. She continued to tell me that she now feels able to study it on her own. She knows where to start and how to do it.

That's a big deal. Have I told you how those moments make me feel?

Several of the rest of the group echoed the exact same thing. The more I think about it, the more my heart fills up to overflowing.

Ministry is not always fun. It's not always exciting or interesting or easy. Sometimes you wonder if it's all worth it, if the world is maybe, just maybe, right in thinking that we're crazy. But when I look into eyes with lights coming on, and I hear someone tell me they know how to study Scripture and grow in their relationship with the Lord, that's when I know that it really is all worth it. When I think of previous students, remember their stories, and look at where they are now because of a solid understanding of Scripture and a grown relationship with the Lord, that's when I know it's all worth it.

The world may think of success in terms of numbers, low-risk, and security. But with the Gospel those indicators are not always a good measure of success. The Gospel is about relationship with God. It's a call to pick up our cross, to walk as Jesus walked, and to love our neighbors as ourselves. The good news of Jesus is that we are created and loved by an all-powerful God who wants to be in relationship with us, to remove the sin that separates us from him. And it starts with picking up your Bible and getting to know who this God really is.

Small or large, this is the heart of Emmaus Ministries. And I whole-heartedly believe that it's worth it.

God bless,


Ellen Stark1 Comment