After a day of fellowship at church, I was thinking of how much I love the ladies I am blessed to know. There is a big variety, from wise older women who have raised families down to the little friends who tell me about their new baby brother.
Occasionally we have ladies’ meetings instead of midweek services, where we study issues directly related to our lives as women and split into small groups to pray for each other. It would feel nicer if all we had to share were triumphs, high points of victory, praises for how wonderful our jobs are. It would feel easier if we had plenty of money to spare, our children were always sweetly obedient, our marriages sailed along without stressors, and our faith stayed steady as a rock. It’s not that way. We all know it, and when we feel safe enough to be vulnerable, we pull our scary stories out from under the sofa cushions where we were hiding them. I headlined us and our prayer requests after I got home one night last year.
- How Jesus Enlarges an Uptight Woman in a Small Space
- Growing Jolly and Old in an Armchair: It’s no Picnic
- A Nauseous Life in Pressure Hose
- My Daughter Reminds Me of Myself
- Stuck in the Middle of an Impossible Situation
- Making Time for Relationships in a Crush of Bodies
- Help! My Phone is Strangling Me
It’s all so different and all the same. Our need to be filled with the Spirit and to have our space beautified by God is universal. How amazing that in each tailor-made circumstance where we look for Him, we find that He is there, waiting and ready with infinite kindness. I have seen Amazing Grace in many of my friends’ lives. The process involves years of patient courage and desperately hard work. Sometimes it is just getting out of bed and doing the next thing when it feels humanly impossible, as my widowed friend who raised ten children has told me.
Some of my friends have children in heaven or live with hearts sick with longing for a baby. There are a few with chronic health issues and one who is currently fighting cancer. There are the crushing burdens of children who do not love Jesus and the equally heavy ones where children have challenges that bring out the mother bear fighting instinct.
Every one has a story and most of us have afflictions that we would never choose voluntarily. We are all united, no matter what our lifestyle or season, with a need to have something bigger, something much more powerful -SOMEONE- to infuse our individual lives and make them worthwhile. There are plenty of legitimate reasons to be depressed, to despair at brokenness, to end marriages and to disown children. I know God is real when I see His help in the lives of His children so that they are living, supernatural examples of faith.
Sometimes, like today, it is good for me to simply notice the goodness of God in His ordinary people.