Hello, my name is Kelsey Marie Wood and I am a Redeemed Girl!

To begin, I first heard Marian Jordan Ellis speak at a Girls’ Night Out event at the University of Georgia. I did not expect to be blown away by the truth she shared, but I was! I found myself leaning in, wanting to hear more in a way that’s indescribable. I was hungry for truth, and she was dishing it out. I had never heard God’s word presented that way before, the way Marian powerfully touched the hearts of every girl in the room.

I left Girls’ Night Out more in love with Jesus and with the truth she shared resonating deep in my soul. I was thankful for such clear and loving truth because I had so many scars and never understood the redemptive healing I needed from Jesus. But after Girls’ Night Out, my life was on a path to healing and wholeness.

After that night, my small group read Marian’s book Sex and The Single Christian Girl. (Ladies I can’t express enough how important this book is for our generation. IT IS A MUST READ!)  Jesus used this book to bring restoration to my life. The more I learned about God’s holiness and power, the more I saw my sin and experienced His grace. As Jesus said, “the truth will set you free!”

It was during this time that I first heard about Redeemed Girl Institute (RGI). That same hunger that ignited in me weeks before fueled the idea of studying the Bible with Marian for a week at the beach. I knew I needed to apply. Looking back, I can honestly say that attending RGI changed my life.

RGI is a week filled with fun on the beach, amazing worship with Jourdan Johnson and in-depth Bible teaching. I loved the girls in my condo and adored my condo leader. We formed bonds that kept us connected even as we returned to our campuses. Getting to spend a few hours relaxing on the beach and soaking in the sun was so great, but the real bread and butter for me were the teaching sessions every day. It was like drinking from a fire hydrant, yet they still left you wanting to learn more.  The presence of Jesus is undeniable at Redeemed Girl Institute.  I was moved to tears at almost every session…Jesus is the center of it all at RGI!

I could write page after page of all the amazing things that I learned, but my main takeaway was that a Redeemed Girl embraces God’s Word. I walked away from RGI in love with the truth. The Bible is God-breathed. I learned that God’s Word is perfect, trustworthy, right, enduring forever, reliable and makes us radiant! God has given us a gift to guide us, which can renew our mind and spirit. By far was the biggest thing I learned at RGI was how to know God more deeply through His Word.

My most memorable moment from RGI was when Marian baptized me in the ocean. I remember that morning being covered by the Presence of God and experiencing such peace! Baptism is a beautiful picture of what happens in our lives when we trust Jesus—the old is gone, and the new has come! Before that week I believed the lie that I needed to clean myself up before God would accept me. But after RGI, I understood that I was fully accepted by God because Jesus makes me clean. When I was dipped under the calm ocean water, I came up feeling like a redeemed girl!

I would urge all of you reading this to apply for Redeemed Girl Institute. You will not regret it.  Not only are you taught the Bible by incredible Jesus-loving women, but you also form a community that will laugh, cry, guide and love you while pointing you back to God. The things you learn at RGI will stay with you forever and equip you to walk with the Lord your whole life.

In Him and For Him,
Kelsey Marie


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