I’m an observer. I pay attention to what people say, how they say it, who they say it to, and what they say about people, places, or things. And since moving from British Columbia to Saskatchewan in 2007, I’ve become particularly interested in what people say about the prairies. What I’ve found is that people’s comments or thoughts towards us prairie people are not always so flattering – hence the reason for this blog post. (I told my good friend – also from a prairie province! – that my next blog post would be on this subject because I was inspired by our reminiscing about what God was doing in our provinces. She’s from MB; I’m from SK.)
One comment, in particular, has stuck with me for years. I once heard an influential BC leader say that regarding beauty, God has passed over the Prairies. Part of me wanted to stand up in the gathering and say, “Pardon?” But that would have been very rude of me! That said, he was quite wrong – clearly he hadn’t spent much time here. The Northern lights are something to behold; you can read about what those are here. Further to that, seeing acres and acres of crops growing is another site to behold. Sections (a section being 640 acres of land) of blowing wheat, or canola plants in bloom (a brilliant yellow!), or flax, or corn. You get the picture. And, we can’t forget the definite seasonal changes here or the fact that the sun shines somewhere between 319-326 days a year! Now granted, there are days where the temperature is bitterly cold (like today at -18), but at least it’s sunny!
One other thing that I want to touch on is this: God’s mission is being lived out in the prairies too, and there are a lot of noteworthy ministries and people serving God in a variety of ways in a variety of contexts.
- In 1971, there was revival here. It would become known as the Canadian Prairie Revival. You can read a bit about that here. And though this was in 1971, God’s still moving in our communities and churches today!
- My friend, Jodi, is the founder of Women’s Journey of Faith. This ministry has ministered to 1000s of women over the years. And though she’s just recently moved on to other exciting opportunities and there is new leadership leading WJOF, Jodi is an inspiring example of someone who followed God’s heart.
- Keitha is another of my friends – she’s the lead pastor at a growing Free Methodist Church. She, too, is an example of the good that comes from the prairies.
- I recently heard Betty Mutwiri, a leader and coach, speak at LEAD Saskatoon. WOW! She’s working in the Saskatoon Health Region and also has her own business. You can learn more about her here.
- Stacy is another friend and co-labourer in Christ. We first met a few years back while taking classes together at Horizon Bible College & Seminary. Stacy has volunteered her time to serve at Horizon and has done a remarkable job helping with golf tournaments and other special events – she’s a keeper!
- One other amazing lady is Karin. She has the most incredible gift of hospitality that I have ever seen. She is a woman of prayer (I’m sure she’s moved a few mountains by praying!), a woman of truth and grace, and she has a fantastic sense of humour!
By highlighting a few interesting things about the prairies and a few friends (there are many, many more awesome people and effective ministries across the prairies), my intention is this: To let my readers know that there is a lot of good that comes from the prairies! So the next time you hear someone say, “What good comes from the Prairies?” You can say, “A lot!”
Blessings from the Prairies!
Carmen, through teaching, speaking, pastoring, blogging, and podcasting, invests in others so they can lead and live better. She is the founder of LEAD Women Ministries, ordained with the PAOC, an Associate Pastor at Westside Pentecostal Church, holds an MA in Leadership & Management, and she can often be found collaborating with other leaders or organizations on projects where there are outcomes to grow people’s confidence, competence, and character.