For Girls

I Can Do It Myself!

Part 1 of Series “Free Soloing”

By: Anna (Forlines) Kozyutynskyi

A year ago, the Lord opened up an opportunity for me to live in Hidalgo, Mexico partnering with a coffee shop ministry. El Buho Cafe was built right next to a world famous rock climbing destination; the infamous El Potrero Chico. We got to meet rock climbers from all over the world, share our testimony, share the love of Jesus, all while financially supporting a local school in a nearby village.

Rock climbing is inherently dangerous. Climbing smart is a must. A partner, the proper safety gear, and following the universal sport rules are what ensures a mostly secure climb.

In Potrero Chico, they have some massive climbing routes. While suspended hundreds of feet in the air, gear and a partner are relied on to hold you secure on the wall. The tallest route in the park is 2,300 feet. Just to put it into perspective, even the Empire State Building is shorter at only 1,454 feet from bottom to tippity top.

Now, imagine a wall EVEN TALLER at 7,569 feet in Yosemite National Park! A famous climber named Alex Honnold climbed it with no gear, no safety precautions, and no partner. Literally him, the rock, a chalk bag, and thousands of feet below. One wrong move and he was doneso. That is just crazy sauce! This is called free soloing. Sounds terrifying? It is. And the death rate for such climbers is 80-90%.

“I can do it myself.”

Why in the world would anyone ever do that? Well, even though I have never tried free solo climbing, I often walk through my life with a free solo attitude. I try to free solo through so many different situations like to-do lists, present sin struggles, past hurts, future decisions, sadnesses, and pains. Just like those free solo climbers, I think to myself, “I got this. I can do this on my own.”

Catch this. The success rate of trying to free solo through life is little or none. God knows this. From the very beginning, He created us to walk in community, sharing with one another the struggles and temptations we are facing so we can encourage one another along the way. He has also given us a safety manual, the bible, to walk in His paths of righteousness. He even promises to equip us with safety gear, His armor, to protect us from our own evil desires and the attacks of the enemy. The best news is that we are never alone. He has given us the Great Comforter, His Spirit, to lead and guide us every step of the way.

Questions to reflect on:

  1. In what areas do you try to free solo through life?
  2. Like me, do you struggle with an ‘I can do it myself’ attitude?
  3. Why do you think you try to do it alone?


Ephesians 6:13-17

Ecclesiastes 4: 9-12


Father, thank you for opening our eyes and hearts to see that we were never meant to walk through this life alone. Help us to reach out to others, to put on your full armor, to lean on Christ, and to follow your paths of righteousness that keep us safe from the dangers of this world. Amen

About the Author: Anna (Forlines) Kozyutynskyi lives in Nashville with her husband, Vlady, and they recently welcomed a baby boy. She enjoys nature and outdoor activities like hiking and rock climbing. Her passion is to share the importance of openness and freedom that can only be found in Jesus. 

For Girls

Setting an Example

By Madeleine Price

Hello, my name is Madeleine Price. I’m thirteen years old and my parents are missionaries to Saint-Nazaire France. A few years ago, my Dad became youth pastor to a church here in Saint-Nazaire. In the beginning, the only kids were me, my sister Emilie, and maybe two or three others. When Covid happened, we did services online. Apparently, lots of people had been watching them, and when the church opened its doors again, we were amazed by how many people showed up. Also, lots of people that lived in the big cities like Paris and Lyon moved to Saint-Nazaire to be closer to the beach. These people needed a new church to go to so they found us, and started coming regularly.

I’ve always been a missionary kid and I don’t know any differently. It can be hard at times, to not see my family for years while I’m in France, but when I’m stateside, I have to leave all my friends for a whole year. I feel like my role in the church is to make other kids feel welcome and to show what being a true Christian looks like. That means living by God’s principles and being a light in the dark.

Our kids’ program is called “Kidz Church” (wonder where my Dad came up with such a creative name)! We usually sing Christian songs for kids. Most of them have motions, and something that I’ve learned is that none of the kids will start until someone else does. No one likes to be the first. Someone always has to step up in order for the others to follow. Since I’m one of the oldest kids there, when I start doing the motions, usually the younger kids follow. So, basically what I’m saying here is:

 “Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.” Titus 2:7 (ESV)

About the Author: Madeleine Price is 13 years old and was born in France, where her parents work for FWB International Missions. She has a twin sister, Emilie, and a dog, Charlotte. She loves eating ice cream, playing the piano, visiting the beach, eating crêpes, and hanging out with her friends. 

For Girls


By: Adra Chandler

Managing mental health can be a real struggle, but the little things can make all the difference. It can also be hard to reach out for help when struggling, but I promise, it gets easier every time you reach out to a trusted friend or mentor. I have struggled with mental health since elementary school; I am now 26 and still struggle at times, but I am thankful for a great support system and Godly women in my life to help me through the rough days.

A well-rounded life is important in taking care of yourself mentally. So, taking care of yourself physically, spiritually, and socially is very important to help keep your mental health at its best.

Here is my go-to list of things to do to help keep me at my best or help pull me out of a slump:

  • Have daily time with God.
  • Attend church regularly.
  • Only sleep in your bed, don’t hang out in bed.
  • Take care of yourself physically (shower, take a walk, eat a balanced meal, floss and brush your teeth, etc.).
  • Spend time speaking kindly and encouragingly to yourself.
  • Tidy your room for a few minutes every day; having a clean, relaxing living space does wonders for anxiety and depression.
  • Find hobbies you like and do them regularly (sports, music, reading, hiking, crafting, etc.).
  • Find an adult Christian woman whom you can trust. Talk to them, ask for advice, and ask for prayer.
  • Be honest when your doctor asks how you feel; they can help you find a counselor to speak to. A Christian Counselor is a great resource to help guide you in your mental health journey.
  • Find uplifting friends.
  • Taking medications as prescribed and not skipping doses.

Ultimately find what works best for you. Do things you enjoy and take care of yourself when you feel great and when you hit a slump.

About the Author: Adra Chandler is the Media Coordinator at Free Will Baptist Foundation and the Social Media Coordinator at WNAC. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family, husband, and 5 cats. She is passionate about mental health and sharing the hope that is only found in Christ.
For Girls

Who Me? A Missionary?

By Abby Walker

I never had any desire to live in another country until God spoke to me about missions in my last year of nursing school. I enjoyed going on short-term trips while I was in high school, but I thought long-term just wasn’t for me. But God, in His perfect timing, had other plans for me and I am so thankful.

You may not feel like you’re called to missions either, and that’s okay! I didn’t!

God has you where you’re at right now for a reason. He has given you your talents and passions on purpose. Keep pursuing what you believe God wants you to do. However, keep your heart open to the possibility that He might change your plans and send you somewhere you’ve never imagined going one day.

Matt Price, a missionary to France, said one thing that has stuck with me for the last five years. He said, “If you tell God that you are willing to do anything for Him, but you won’t even consider going to another country, then are you actually willing to do anything? Or just what makes you comfortable?” That doesn’t necessarily mean He will call you to another country, He just wants you to be willing to go if He does ask you to.

If you ever start to question whether or not that’s a possibility, start praying! Look for opportunities to go and see! He will open and close doors to show you the correct path. Pray and ask God how He wants you to share the gospel with the world. Maybe it’s praying for or financially supporting missionaries. Maybe it’s going on mission trips or one day moving to another country. God will let you know if you seek and ask.

So…go on those short-term trips. Pray to God for understanding and clarity. See the need for the gospel in other cities and countries. After all, you’ll never know unless you ask and go!

About the Author: Abby Walker has been living in Tokyo for the past year and working with the Hope Alive Team. Before that, she worked as an orthopedic nurse for 2 years. She enjoys playing basketball, reading, and a good iced café latte!
For Girls

I Am The Thief

By: Claire Ryan

I want you to imagine with me for a moment.

Think about Jesus. His appearance; olive skin, carpenter hands, and lowly apparel. Think about His life. Other than being born of a virgin and living in perfection, He likely had a similar upbringing to some of us. He was raised in simplicity by two God-fearing earthly parents. He had multiple siblings and a strong work ethic. Think about His mission. Three years of specified ministry in which He proclaimed to be God and performed great miracles.

Now, think about His death. Bloodied hands, whip-lined back, a crown of thorns, his body hanging on a cross. Think of all the torture and ridicule that He endured along the road to the cross. The entire reason behind His birth, accomplished in His death.

Mocked, beaten, whipped, spit on, cursed, humiliated—Yet, Jesus pressed on.

Why go through that suffering and still press on?

The reason is found in Romans 5:8-9: God showed His love for us, dying for our sins. Through His blood, we can be saved. Hebrews 5 states that, “He became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey Him.” Jesus pressed on in the misery knowing through His death on the cross a greater glory awaited Him and any who accepted Him. 

Think about the thief on the cross; he made it worthwhile for Jesus. That thief made Jesus’ ministry useful, His life successful, and His death invaluable.

I am the thief.

I have failed to live by His ways, fallen short of His glory, and dropped so low in my own sin I have doubted His mercy and grace for my life. I have questioned Him, like Sarah. Denied Him, like Peter. Doubted Him, like Thomas.

Yet, His mercy is all-sufficient; His grace is never ending. He bore the weight of the cross so I would not have to. He carried my sin up that hill to Calvary.

I am the thief. But He paid my pardon. And, when I humbly admit my desire, my need for His forgiveness in my life, that grace is a continual stream flowing over me daily.  

We are all the thief on the cross. But when we call upon Him like that thief, He is faithful to remember us in His Kingdom.

For Girls

Communication is Key

By: Hannah Gorrell

We may often reflect on which things may have been different if sin had not entered the world. Maybe our first thoughts are death or pain, but what about the way we communicate?

Yes, everything has been altered after the perfect world has been spoiled by sin, even the way we talk. I wish this was not so. I feel it most in times of stress. I’ve been the victim of overthinking. I struggle and overanalyze a statement that I hear or worry about the motivations behind a simple text.

We should practice what James 1:19 tells us, be slow to speak. Let’s be slow to speak, but still, speak honestly. Thankfully in heaven these would be two things we won’t have to worry about. But in order to make on earth as it is in heaven, we must saturate our life with truth. Practice speaking kindly, it will make it easier when you have less time to be intentional with your words. 

In the same way, we should already be communicating honestly and kindly with those around us. This is even before we have to “speak the truth in love” or communicate something more difficult to share. 

Let’s pray for opportunities to practice kind speech. Pray for God to place good examples around us from whom we can learn.

For Girls

Happy Valentine’s Day?

By: Ruth McDonald

There is so much chocolate and hype for this annual celebration of love and romance, isn’t there? It’s supposed to be a happy holiday, but for some of us, it can be a bit awkward. My 2 single kids jokingly call it “Singleness Awareness Day” or SAD.

I always wanted to play hooky from school on that day each year. As a shy, serious, and socially awkward teen, I dreaded homeroom on that particular morning like the plague Each year, the cheerleaders sponsored a fundraiser for students to send “Kiss-grams” or flowers or some such thing to their favorite people. I wanted to crawl under my desk as the perky popular girls received armloads of affirmation and I received none. It was the most humiliating day of the year for girls like me.

It was different in elementary school, of course. We all decorated our own mailboxes in anticipation of the deluge of cards we would receive. Every student gave every other student a card because it was mandatory. I do remember choosing the most deluxe valentines in the set for those I liked the best and sometimes taping a special sucker to the envelope. I also picked the cards I least liked for the classmates I least liked (which, now that I think about it, was fairly passive-aggressive for a child, wasn’t it?)

I have 4 children, and I love them all. Not equally, exactly, because they’re such different people. It’s impossible to measure my affection or rank them in any kind of order. Each of them thrills my heart with deep, inexpressible joy. On some days, one of them makes me especially happy and I jokingly tell them “You’re my favorite!” But they all know that coveted position will shift to one of the others before they turn around.

While God may be a bit more pleased with my behavior at certain times and less at others, His love for me never wavers. The very idea that I’d like to be His favorite only serves to showcase the self-centeredness of my nature. And yet, it does thrill my heart to know that He “rejoices over me with singing.” The God of the entire universe serenades me on Valentine’s Day and every other day of my life! And it’s more than okay with me that He does the same for you.

I hope you receive flowers, chocolates, and expressions of love and friendship today. But even if you don’t, please imagine yourself holding armloads of Valentines – the best in the box. God doesn’t love anyone else more than He loves you. YOU are the apple of His eye, His treasure, His special someone.

For Girls

Beginning With Him

By: Destinee Payne

This Christmas time of the year is always exciting. There are wonderful festivities and school parties. There are cozy decorations and Christmas music. The gift exchanges make us wonder what gift we will receive. And don’t forget about the Christmas break from school that does not seem long enough!

With all these things going on, it is easy to go beyond the gift wrapping. We get wrapped up in ourselves! When we are constantly thinking about the things we want as gifts and the plans we make for Christmas fun, we can forget what we are grateful for. If we are not careful, we can forget the special gift that has already been given to us through Jesus Christ.

While on breaks like Christmas, we need to be careful not to take a break from our walk with our Savior. When our schedules change and we get more chances to sleep in and relax, it becomes easier to neglect our quiet time with God. We can fall out of a daily routine of reading the Bible, which will stunt our spiritual growth if we let it happen for too long.

Psalm 19:7-10: “The instruction of the Lord is perfect, renewing one’s life; the testimony of the Lord is trustworthy, making the inexperienced wise. The precepts of the Lord are right, making the heart glad…The ordinances of the Lord are….more desirable than gold.”

When we are strong in our daily reading and prayer with the Lord how strong we can become in Him! How joyful we will become! This is the time of the year to be especially grateful to God for all that He has done, especially in sending His Son.

Psalm 63:7: “You have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy.”

I pray that you carry the joy of the Lord with you this year. I challenge you to not let the distractions of special seasons in life stunt your walk and daily time with Him. If you do not have a routine of spending time in the Word daily, I pray that you begin today! If you don’t know how, talk to a mature Christian woman who can help you!

For Girls

Where God Leads

By: Ruby Crowe

When I was seven years old my parents, two younger sisters and I moved to southern Japan. We had lived on the Northern island of Hokkaido since I was a baby, but we were moving to the outskirts of Tokyo. I attended a Japanese preschool since I was 3 years old and my parents planned on putting me in an English speaking Christian school for my elementary years. But I saw my neighborhood kids walking to school everyday and told my parents I wanted to know my neighbors and have Japanese friends. The next month I went to the school where nobody spoke English and I didn’t look like anybody there with my blond hair and brown eyes. Slowly I learned the language and tried to fit in.

But only two years later it was time to move back home to North Carolina. My whole family missed Japan so much, but once I looked around I realized that God had put us in the right place. The school I went to was so different from the school in Tokyo. . In Japan the teachers and rules were very strict and nobody talked about Christianity. But in America my third grade teacher shared her testimony in class! She had been a missionary kid in Africa! I lived there from second to fourth grade. I also made some close friends that I still keep in touch with today.

But when I was ten we moved to Columbus, Ohio to follow my dad’s job as a Chick-fil-A owner. It was hard moving again and it took me a while to make friends and of course I missed my old home and friends very much. But God did something amazing by moving us to Ohio. We quickly learned that Columbus, Ohio has a very large Japanese population in America. My parents started teaching ESL at our church and we became very connected to the Japanese community. At the end of the first  year we moved about 15 minutes away from where we lived. Moving 15 minutes was easier than moving from another country, but then Covid came.

            It was hard making friends during COVID in a sixth grade only school, where everybody already had friends. I got very lonely, then my parents considered an option we never had considered before: homeschooling. We thought and prayed about it and everyone felt very clearly that this was what God wanted us to do. So my two sisters and I looked for a co-op we could join so we could meet some new people. A co-op is where a bunch of homeschoolers get together and do fun things or learn. We found one that had exactly three spots open, it was a theater group. Everyone was so welcoming and nice it didn’t take long for all the new people to make friends. We love it so much we decided to do it again this year.

I love how we can trace back through the events of our lives and God is always putting us exactly where we are supposed to be. So I know it’s hard to think it in the middle of a difficult moment, but I challenge you to look back on your life. You will find that God has been there the whole time and He’s helping you with each step, move and change in your life!

For Girls

Fruit of the Spirit

By: Hannah Gorrell

“The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law” (Galatians 5:22-23)

Paul lists the fruit of the Spirit. These attributes pertain to one fruit. He does not say the “fruits are” but the” fruit is.” The work of the Spirit in us is alive, active, and ever growing. As the fruit bearer, a Spirit bearer, we should be careful in all opportunities. We present the Spirit of God to others by being loving, joyful, patient, kind, good, faithful, gentle, and full of self-control.

Love is a big, heavy word. This word is overused and abused. We have learned love to be a strong feeling of like. Its opposite, hate, as a strong feeling of dislike. Paul shows us what love really is. His definition reveals that love is not just like. It is a decision or action to be completely selfless. To be patient, kind, longsuffering, and never failing requires an intentional heart. One must be drained of self and focus only on the benefit of the other, the one they love. Hate is not the opposite of love; selfishness is.

Father, help us show Your love to others as we seek to develop the fruit of the Spirit in our lives. May we represent You well in all opportunities.