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Peace in the Darkness

Ann Spangler
Ann Spangler
2016 26 May

a person with hands raised appears over the sheet music for "Jesus Loves Me"

In addition to working with orphans, Katherine Welch has an international ministry to victims of human trafficking. Her work takes her into parts of the world that most of us can’t imagine. It’s in the midst of the darkness that she struggles to find God’s peace. Listen to her reflections on a recent trip.

“I know what I’m gonna face when I do certain things and go certain places, and it is always uncomfortable. I’ve learned to recognize the lies and understand the darkness that I feel, but that doesn’t mean I have any magic words to make it go away. It takes training to endure and press on and in and go ahead.

“Sometimes it is discouragement and I question my being there. I often suffer from sleeplessness and sometimes I get uncharacteristically anxious about a lot of different things not even related to the work at hand. I just press into the Father, as hard as I can; and understand that these thoughts are unbidden, these anxieties are not truth, these feelings are false. I plead for and receive peace, joy, and strength.”1

Katherine’s ministry takes her onto the front lines of the battle with evil. The enemy would like nothing better than to drive her out or neutralize her by planting seeds of anxiety and doubt. But Katherine has learned to endure, to plead for and receive the peace and perspective she needs.

Her experience reminds me a little of those commercials in which the effectiveness of a particular laundry detergent is proven by its ability to clean the worst kinds of stains. Viewers are treated to a before and after view, noting how the dirtiest clothes come out spotless after being washed. Likewise, Katherine’s experience tells us that God’s peace works no matter where we are or what we are confronting. God can transform a heart that is anxious and doubtful into one that is full of joy and strength.

As you press into the Father today, take a few moments to pray for Katherine, asking God to keep her in his peace. Pray, too, for the countless women and children she is serving throughout the world, asking God to free them from slavery and bring them into relationship with himself.

1. Katherine Welch, “The Work of the Week,” A Just Walk (Run, Hike, Etc . . .) (blog), August 19, 2011, accessed August 30, 2011,