Experiencing God in Sao Paulo

There have been very few times in my life where I’ve experienced such an awareness of God’s tangible presence as I did this past week in Sao Paulo. Thank you so much for supporting us in prayer. I left Brazil a full and blessed woman; as much of my week was spent watching God impact women’s lives. Woman after woman came to me after I spoke to share specific ways God convicted them and to ask for prayer.

Many made commitments and are reaching out to mature women to help hold them accountable to those commitments.

Joel and Cindy were our hosts. They are an extremely gracious, humble, Christ-centered, couple who have served as missionaries to Brazil for several years. God used them to orchestrate the events of our week in Brazil and provide us a lavish and comfortable stay in their home. God is using them to impact families in their community and I was delighted to hear stories of how God has been working long before we arrived.

Three years ago, Cindy led a small group of women through the study of True Woman 101. Yep, you read that right, True Woman “101”, not the newly released True Woman 201. God is still using that study in powerful ways, even though the follow-up study was released this month. During our stay, many from that original group expressed their gratitude for the study and told us how it impacted their lives.

I loved hearing Cindy’s husband, Joel, describe the changes he’s seen in his wife since she first went through True Woman 101 three years ago.

Cindy told me, “We’ve done many Bible studies before, but this study changed our lives and we’re still seeing fruit from it.” Since that original group, Cindy has taken several others through TW 101 and is currently leading a group of young women (a mixture of singles and married women) through the study.

We spent an enjoyable evening with that group and my heart nearly burst as I listened to woman after woman express how God had been working in her life.

The young women (most in their early twenties) took turns voicing how the study is impacting their perspective on womanhood. A few of the women came from solid biblical backgrounds, some were feminists, egalitarians, and nominal Christians . . . each expressed how they’ve been profoundly impacted through seeing (for the first time) their biblical calling and design as women.

One woman remarked, “It brought instant change to my life because I was able to see that I was doing the opposite of what I’m supposed to do, and who I’m supposed to be as a woman. I was destroying my marriage. Learning this has changed how I relate to my husband, my children, and even my parents. There were many times throughout the study when I had to drop to my knees and ask God’s forgiveness. I’m doing the study for the third time, and each time I see new things that God wants to change.”

Her comments were reiterated repeatedly by women I met, over the course of the week, who had been impacted by going through the study.

One young woman (with a Philosophy degree) has only been married a year, and before the study she was an avowed egalitarian. She told me that she feared doing the study because she thought she would completely disagree with what she’d be reading, but she wanted to do the study with Cindy out of love and respect for her. She said as she started working her way through the study that “disagreement” wasn’t her reaction at all. She actually is embracing what she is studying and can’t deny what Scripture is saying to her as a woman. She said, “I never saw this before, but it is now so clear.”

It is apparent that God has given Cindy a specific burden for the women of Brazil. She believes that God wants to provide Revive Our Hearts resources for the Portuguese speaking women of Latin America. Cindy has led several English speaking women through TW 101, but there are literally millions of hungry women in Sao Paulo who need this resource.

Cindy not only recognized the need, but she and others went to prayer with this burden and shared with some of their contacts their vision, and as a result, the first Portuguese translation of a Revive Our Hearts resource is in its final stages of editing. TW 101 will be available for Brazilian women in June. The publisher attended some of the meetings where I spoke and is thrilled with the interest they’ve seen for this resource.

I was invited to a special women’s event to introduce the women to the Portuguese translation of TW 101 and spoke through an interpreter. I was amazed by the response after the message. There were many women who shared with me (through interpreters) that the evening was a life-changing experience for them. The message I shared was NOT astounding, it was quite simple, but what was astounding was how God worked.

I believe God is working in response to a band of transformed women who are crying out to Him to reach the women of Brazil.

Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, I had additional speaking opportunities, and each time, God moved in amazing ways. It isn’t something I can easily describe, but I was aware of God’s presence and desire to work there in such a tangible way. There are far too many details to share in a blog post, but please be assured, your prayers were felt. I’m so grateful for your intercession!

God is on the move to display His glory across the globe and we are part of that movement as we continue to seek His face and cry out to Him to work. He never ceases to amaze me, I heard from a woman this week who is beginning a “Fierce Women” study in Central Asia, in a predominantly Muslim area. Only God.

From the Dominican Republic, across Latin America, throughout Europe, to Africa and Asia, God is inviting women to experience His transforming power!


  • Debbie

    Thank you for coming! It was indeed a blessing to so many of us! I am looking forward to doing a TW101 study after our winter break in August, for my first time. I am also spreading the word about the study coming out in Portuguese amongst my Brazilian contacts and many are expressing interest in it.

  • Kimberly Wagner

    Wow, Debbie, so glad you are spreading the word!! I’m so glad you’ll be doing the TW 101 study, let me know how God uses it in your life 🙂