Rich, thoughtful words, spoken into my heart that go deep and linger. I will cling tightly to them. They will stay with me and will comfort me when I doubt that I am enough for Him. I have been blessed through His people. A tongue can slash as a sword, wounding deeply but I have been bathed in the smooth waters that skim over velvet rocks. Soft, welcoming and gentle to the touch.
Yesterday I was sitting with a group of women who are encouragers, mentors, leaders.
One of them stopped to talk to a woman at another table. I heard a name spoken .. one I had not heard in years. Yet one I had thought of often, with much tenderness.
The woman stood up and started coming towards me. I got up and walked towards her. I knew. We hugged each other deeply and my eyes stung as tears fell. I came face to face with a sister, a women who had mentored me, even as I was unaware. A women I admired and had lost touch with.
She spoke beautiful words to me.
She had connected me to a group of women. She had given me a role. She quietly bowed out.
She had done her job.
She had introduced me to a local author, writer, a Godly woman. What a gift to sit with them at lunch and be still.
Truth is I am sure I talked too much and didn't listen enough. I would love to go back.
I became busy with my new community, young children, finding my place.
We parted and I went back to my table. I tried to put into words what this woman had given me. The truth is I see it clearer now, looking back. She was obedient to God's call on her life. She invested in me, encouraged me and was part of the molding process of my life in Christ.
There was a giggle and one of them said, "We will talk of you this way someday. We will say, remember Dale, blah, blah, blah." This made us all laugh. Yet the realization of how we affect each other was palpable. There are no neutral interactions. You will leave people full or empty. My cup was about to run over...
On Monday I will have lunch with this friend and I will be sure she hears my words of gratitude.
Tonight I met with a friend, younger than me. We share a deep friendship that does not hinge on where we are in life, unless we are talking where we are in Christ. She is deep in her faith and invites others to come along with her.
She asked me to lead her High School students at church while she is away for a few weeks. My excitement bordered ridiculous. You see, I love high school students.
She spoke kind words, that affirmed me, gave me hope. I saw that I had made a difference in her life.
She told me things that encouraged me, maybe more than anyone else has... ever.
She believes many people share these feelings, but few are willing to speak them.
This stuck with me. Why do we do this? Are we sinning when we hold back, not telling others that we love them? That we have been changed by them. That they are worthy, special and make a difference in our lives.
I think of these two women, this group of adult women and these young women. One who mentored me, one who considers me a mentor, a group that pushes each other to be better leaders, and these students/followers of Jesus who are already leading in big ways.
We are sisters on the same journey. We have different stories, ages, goals, yet we are called to encourage and lift one another up.
Let us joyfully love and be fully devoted to one another daily, recognizing this is God's desire for us.
Let us push each other on, reaching for the goals Christ has put on our hearts.
Let us invest in one another.
May we see the truth of this life He has given us. Not to fill ourselves with empty desires but to become mature in Him. He has plans dear sisters for each one of us. May we see that clearly today.
I Am Bringing Sons Into Glory
"We should no longer be children tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, but, speaking in truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head - Christ."
"My people are precious to Me. No evil shall befall them without My knowledge. My grace I lavish upon them to conform them to My image. My energies I give for their nurture and development.
I have not simply brought forth children but am bringing sons( daughters) into glory. I have rejoiced in their birth but rejoice more deeply in their maturity.
Be babies no longer, but grow. Fed by the Word of God and succored by prayer, let your development into full stature be accomplished.
My hand is upon you. Draw close. There may be times when I must wield the rod of correction, but this is for your ultimate good.
Blessing will be held back and growth retarded if you resist My discipline."
Come Away My Beloved - Frances J. Roberts