For the last two years I have consistently prayed for God to connect Burning Bush Communities with local disciples who are full of His love and passion, and who desire to reveal the Kingdom in our city. Disciples who are both ready to go, and recognize their need for support and community from like-minded brothers and sisters. This blog has testified again and again to how God has answered, and continues to answer that prayer!
Today it is my pleasure to introduce you to Peggy Welch, a new member of the Burning Bush Communities family, and the leader of Justified, a ministry dedicated to walking with and discipling women as they come out of jail and prison. Peggy was incarcerated for five years herself, and her experience in coming to faith and the difficulty of navigating life after exiting the justice system has inspired her to pursue the call that God has placed on her.
In her own words:
Justified was implanted in my heart about 8 years ago while sitting in the Florida Department of Corrections. At the time I was a new Christian and did not even know what that word meant. Now I do. Now I understand. Justified is when we are in right relationship or standing with God. We are His. It is the foundation that we are building from that point. Everything in life emerges from our relationship with Jesus.
I would never have chosen this for myself. I can honestly say that this is not my desire but a desire placed in me by God. I have actually tried to fight it, run from it, but there is no fighting or running God unless you want to have a miserable existence. The ministry or vision came from a place of pain, sin and stupidity. But He will use my mess for His message, and to equip and empower women to be the women that God has called them to be. To release them from the bondage that holds them back. To discover a healthier path to life. To allow them to cultivate the life God intended for them.
Justified will be a place for women that were previously incarcerated to locate the tools necessary to live a life of stability. To move pass the labels. To give them hope that they can accomplish amazing things even though they chose to go down a difficult road. It’s not too late for them. Justified will offer biblical crisis counseling, credit and financial counseling, career coaching, and health and wellness programs. These tools and skills will empower them and give them the confidence that they can achieve success. For those who decide they want to change—Justified will be there to offer direction and a plan action for them to follow!