Ricki Lynn's Testimony
Psalm 127:1 Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who built it…
This scripture describes my entering LifeWorks as a volunteer. After retiring from the State of Louisiana, I moved to Waynesville with the expectation of volunteering at LifeWorks and changing lives. You see, I grew up in an abusive family right here in Haywood County. I entered my teens with low self-esteem continuing to choose abusive relationships because that was my norm. The Lord graciously moved me to Baton Rouge, Louisiana where God placed women in my life who taught me to overcome my deficits and build on my strengths! How to know who I was in Christ Jesus and by faith, walk in it.
I thought because I had been freed of the weight most of these ladies struggle with, I was equipped to help change their lives for the better (like overnight or at least a week or so)! After a few weeks at LifeWorks going through the Jobs for Life and Love Unveiled Bible study, I realized only Jesus can truly change lives. I realized the need to participate in everything the ladies do at LifeWorks. I knew the Jobs for Life curriculum was a proven successful tool in preparing women for life and employment.
At this phase in my life (70 years old), what I didn’t expect was God using it for His purpose for me.
Moses was 80 years old when God spoke to him from the burning bush. Moses was in the land of Midian where he had fled after he murdered an Egyptian. He probably thought he was going to lead a low-keyed life tending sheep until he died. But God had other plans. Wow! That’s me!
I completed the Love Unveiled bible study and the Jobs for Life classes and graduated in the spring of 2020. In the fall of 2020, the Lord called me to teach the Jobs for Life class.
I am overwhelmed most days at the goodness of God. Watching these ladies come to know who they are in Christ Jesus and shaking off the labels the world has attached to them, brings me great joy. I truly love participating in discussions of the struggles of everyday life and equipping women with the tools and knowledge to build on their God given skills and gifts.
That is what LifeWorks is all about. With Jesus life works!
Thank you for allowing me to share.
Sue Ellen Hopper
July 27, 2021
Testimony of 2019-2020 Graduate
In September 2019 I had a young lady walk into my office, broken and mad at God. She had been clean for a few years but it seemed at every turn everything was against her. The last straw came in September of 2018 when she was in a horrible car wreck and although her life had been spared, it was evident that her eye would never be used again; so, in February 2018 she had her eye removed. Although she was thankful for her life, she was in a dark place not sure she wanted to live. She had worked her way through her addiction with the help of Celebrate Recovery, but that was not offering her the support she needed to stay clean. Right before she came to LifeWorks, in August they did a socket implant to hopefully get her an implant that might help her to feel better about herself. Walking into class, she was determined this was not for her but she would hang around and see what happened here. Well, as they say the rest is history. She settled in, so much so that she started being a real asset to our ministry. She was willing to provide transportation, bring lunch, and just help and encourage others in the class. When Covid hit in March of 2020, she continued to join us via Zoom and Facebook, even though she had become full time teacher to her two little boys as well as full time mom. We were able to come back in May and she was able to graduate in June. We watched the Lord transform and change her while in the program, but the greatest transformation has taken place since graduation.
She has had three more surgeries to try to get to a normalcy for her eye, but her body keeps rejecting the implants. Late July, I stood with her as we received the call that her home was on fire and everything was a total loss, including the family’s beloved cat. She marched in my office two days later with a plan to move forward. God knows best and He will take care of me. GREAT FAITH, I tell you! Just a week after her home is lost, she is in the office to participate in Christian Women’s Job Corp training, with the thought that God may be calling her to open a site in Jackson County. The same week we had yet another surgery on her eye. She helped me transport ladies in and out getting ready for the new year to start and while working at my front desk, she began to look for a job. Very quickly, she found one and has been working faithfully for them as well as LifeWorks the last four weeks. The Lord has provided greatly through her faith and she is close to signing papers to purchase a new doublewide mobile home to go back on the family land, that within the next few weeks will be transferred into her name. This week early Sunday morning, she received a phone call that her “Granny” had passed away suddenly. She called, we cried together, prayed together and as we were ready to get off the phone, she said, I’m going to be ok, I know God is holding me and Granny. I’m going to be just fine.
I know this will be an ongoing story…and I am so thankful God choose us to be a part!!
These are her words from graduation in June of this year as she was giving testimony
Faith over fear, my eye is on you, my hand will never leave you. What the enemy uses to hurt you, God uses to prosper you. In case you forgot God has a purpose for all that pain and your brokenness is no more important than anyone else’s. Theirs just looks different on them. Anyone can count the seeds in an apple. But only God can count the number of apples in a seed. In times of loss eventually memories bring smiles instead of tears.
When the child of God looks in to the Word of God and sees the son of God she is changed by spirit of God into the image of God.