Mother's Day in Israel shares the same date as the first day of Spring, and rightfully so. And every year, around this time, we hold the largest local-language annual evangelistic event in all the country, "Mother's Day Celebration." It is ever so fitting that Spring and new life should be celebrated on the same day. I, personally, am overwhelmed every year by what God does through this event.
This celebration started 17 years ago with around 60 attendees. It is rooted in simplicity and love, and wanting to honor the mother who takes care of the whole family. I was not there then, but I know the person who started it, CHLF's Rose Obeid. She carried a vision to reach the mother, and through her to reach the whole family. And like a mother, she watched as her vision grew into this wonderful event which serves about 900 women annually.
As a part of the worship band, I had a unique and wonderful view of
the celebration and worshipful faces, as this photo I took attests!
I can't say that it is the same every year. Some things are, but one can never predict what God will do other than "it will be great!" We stood at the door ushering women in. And as the places filled up more women kept coming in. We had about 750 attendees preregistered but 960 actually came through the doors. The more the merrier!
A good number of the attendees are believers who already attend church and come to be blessed and have good fellowship. Some of these 'churched' women made a decision for the Lord through this very celebration in previous years. More than in previous years there was a concerted effort for every churched attendee to bring a friend who has never heard the Gospel before, and many did just that. There were also a good number of attendees from different religious backgrounds who had a very positive experience and are requesting follow up.
I am thankful for such carriers of a vision and such a team that supports it. We went home beat, but it all fades away in the grand scheme that is God's Kingdom. I am already looking forward to next year to see what great things God has in store!