“My life began to mature at age 24 after one of the first 4 Aglow founders, Mrs. Blankenship and her daughter Grace Woolsey from Seattle, came into my home in Scottsdale, Arizona and told me I should start an Aglow,” writes Melody Gibson.
Melody continues, “Not knowing what an Aglow was, God used that invitation to stir me towards outreach to ladies in the community as I sold Avon door to door. I began to see some ladies would never enter a church door and others had no interest, but they deserved compassion, and better than they had. Others didn't want preaching in their house but welcomed an invitation to lunch.
“Within a year, a simple home meeting with potluck lunches became the beginning of the Scottsdale Day Aglow, then later the Night Aglow, and later two sister Aglows in nearby towns. It grew from 20 ladies to 40 and 50 ladies as we discovered dining and hotel establishments that welcomed lunch and dinner meetings. The venues helped neutralize the setting and provided ample time to visit and become bonded friends. Many of those ladies are my friends to this day, 40 years later.
“Others became followers of Christ and we saw their lives changed as they grew in His love for them. Giving Christ a platform, dignifying the meeting space with fellowship and a meal made a huge difference in how many ladies would come back.
“I grew as a leader, and use many of the things learned through Aglow training to this day. It behooves us to remember how badly some of our unchurched sisters and brothers need us to reach out to them. There is always a way to reach them and Aglow is an excellent avenue. There's always a way to sponsor those less fortunate to join in when their heart is willing but their pocket is empty. There is always a way to market inexpensively, because ‘when they don't know, they cannot go’.
“It is with prayer and faith in our sisters to respond to God's call, that I ask our older ladies to teach our younger ladies that sometimes all it takes is a starting point and no budget. It is something we can do just placing one foot in front of the other. And sometimes, like with me, no training, but a willingness to begin. Lest we try to be too sophisticated or spiritual enough to fit the role, sometimes we must begin simply with ‘Yes, Lord’ and go from there. The training will come. It did for me and it has always been one of my most appreciated seasons of my younger years.
“Don't allow the lack of ‘How to’ to get in your way, just do it! Start! Aglow will guide you through some really good moments in your life. I am now 67 years old, and am enjoying different things than I have enjoyed in the past. At 24, I assumed myself too young, too afraid of being up front, and God showed me otherwise.
“Take a moment to ask God if He would use you in Aglow. Then run, don't walk, to find out where to begin. The ladies in your community will one day thank you for being there for them and Aglow will help you to do the rest. Is it simple or easy? No. That is rarely the case. Yet, there are team members to find and funds to pay low overhead, and the enemy would love to keep you from starting, continuing, and finishing well. But it is always worth the journey, so rather than hesitate, find a moment to ask God how you can begin, then just do it. It is a good thing when you start to serve God in outreach. There will be no regrets-ever.”