Intersecting Life and Faith

Category: Dusty Women (Page 2 of 4)

Dusty Women~~Amanda

Months ago I came across Titus 2 Tuesday blog posts. Inspired to do the same thing I set out to make a list of my own questions. Women who have encouraged me to be a radical follower of Jesus. Radical in the sense they love God with all the heart, mind and soul and their neighbor as themselves. They are ordinary women who love and serve an Extraordinary God. Women I want model so the Word of God will not be dishonored. Titus 2:5

I wanted a catchy title other than God’s Women, so I asked a friend for help and she said what is something that defines us? Maybe not where we’re from but where we’re going?

I always love the analogy of following Jesus so closely that you get the dust of your shepherd on you. Following in the footsteps of your Shepherd.  So you could call us Dusty Women.

I caught up with Amanda earlier this summer drinking lattes’ with great conversation. She returned last December from a two year commitment with SIM and I wanted to hear all about it. We didn’t get around to my Dusty Women questions because I wanted to hear her back story of her faith walk and how she ended up in Kenya. One question I did ask which she didn’t hesitate in answering.

“What would you say to your 16 year old self? to which she replied…

“You’re not getting married tomorrow, so boys don’t matter.”

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Describe yourself in 5-7 words.

Christ-following, loyal, compassionate, silly, baker, photographer, dreamer     

Amanda, briefly describe your walk of faith.

I grew up in a Christian home and placed my trust in Jesus when I was just four years old. Unfortunately, as passionate as I was in the beginning, my faith soon wavered under the stress of trying to fit in. I tried to live both worlds, the good little Christian girl at home and at church, and the “cool” kid at school. It didn’t work so well. Because of these problems at school, I was home-schooled for a few years in high school. Best decision ever. God really met me at my low point, and re-dedicating my life to Him, I found the strength I needed to face the every day, to realize that I cannot live for both God and man (Galatians 1:10). Although I have since had many moments of people-pleasing, God has shown me time and again that He is all-sufficient, and all-surpassing in worth. And because of the great love that He has shown me, even in all my sin, I now have the opportunity to serve Him and testify to His goodness in Kenya.

What does God’s Word mean to you?

God’s Word is life: it is the very breath in me, my daily bread, strength for my weary soul, water in a dry and thirsty land, an ever-present help in times of trouble, joy and peace in the midst of chaos, the greatest Love Story ever written.


Briefly explain your work as a short-term missionary.

Since my job was to capture and tell the stories in Kenya, it is hard to pick just one. One of my favorites, though, is the time we had the opportunity to interview a woman who had taken in over eighty IDPs (Internally Displace Peoples from the conflict near the coast of Kenya). She and her family provided shelter, food, clothes and school fees at the expense of their own comfort, their own bills to pay, trusting that God would provide. I was so encouraged by her, her faith and willingness to give it all away for the sake of the gospel. After recounting how they had completely depleted their savings and watched God provide for their needs, she said it reminded her that “If I take care of God’s business, he takes care of mine.” And then she said “I will never get tired of serving Jesus, even when it hurts.” What a great reminder! No matter what we face, God is in control, and since “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above…” (James 1:17), everything we have is God’s anyway, so why not give it back to Him willingly. Besides, if we are more valuable than the birds of the air and the lilies of the field, whom God has fed and clothed, how much more will He do so for us! (Matthew 6) “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things will be added unto you.” (Matthew 6:33)                                 

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Dusty Women-Kathy

Months ago I came across Titus 2 Tuesday blog posts. Inspired to do the same thing I set out to make a list of my own questions. Women who have encouraged me to be a radical follower of Jesus. Radical in the sense they love God with all the heart, mind and soul and their neighbor as themselves. They are ordinary women who love and serve an Extraordinary God. Women I want to be like so the Word of God will not be dishonored. Titus 2:5

I ask about coffee or tea and vanilla or chocolate to find out who I will be drinking coffee and eating chocolate cake with!!

I wanted a catchy title other than God’s Women, so I asked a friend for help and she said

what is something that defines us? Maybe not where we’re from but where we’re going?

I always love the analogy of following Jesus so closely that you get the dust of your shepherd on you. Following in the footsteps of your Shepherd.  So you could call us Dusty Women.

I have known Kathy since we came to Lafayette. I came to know her much better when I sat with her husband Joe while she was in surgery having a mastectomy, and then shortly after that surgery, another mastectomy. Yes, she had breast cancer. As I write, I can hear her saying

This is what God taught me during my breast cancer or her testimony of God being with her through all of it.

Kathy is a friend I’ve had quite a few adventures with, but this is her story not mine, so I will let her tell it.

Describe yourself in 5-7 words

Child of the King, wife, mother, grandmother, sister, care-giver, friend

Kathy, how did you become a Christian?

My son Joey, was used by God to draw me and my husband to Himself. With Joey being a real handful and my husband on the road driving truck, I felt like a single mother. Through my job, I met a wonderful Christian woman who prayed for me then invited me to her church. I remember the first Sunday I was to go not wanting to get up. Not wanting to let the devil win, I went to church. The following Sunday my husband went and we both wanted what the people at the Church had. We gave our hearts to Christ that weekend.  I felt like a new person and I was and am a new person in Christ. I am truly thankful to God everyday with my mission in life to look like Jesus.

What does God’s Word mean to you?

God’s Word amazes me! As I walk along my path being a Christian, God’s Word becomes more precious. During my struggles I remember Philippians 4:13; Romans 8:28. Wow, I was called according to His purpose. When I was going through my breast cancer I remember the Lord giving me His wonderful grace to face everything. I knew I was never alone and He took away my fears. It is a wonderful feeling knowing His grace and I know His grace will someday lead me home.

What does the Church, the body of believers, mean to you?

Every time I am with my Church family, I feel love and acceptance. Fellowship with other Christians brings me great joy. I am the crazy lady asking people after church, “What are you doing for lunch?” I also know the body of Christ will always be with me like a warm blanket covering me with love and prayer.

What do you enjoy about being a wife? Mother? Grandmother?

I was married at 19. I know now I didn’t know what real love was. The Lord blessed me with a caring and loving man. He has seen me at my worst and still loves me. I know this by the way he takes care of me when I’m sick. I enjoy the companionship we share. There are times I will think about something and he will say, “I was just thinking about that!” I enjoy most of all is the caring and love we share even if it is just watching TV together. I am glad we are together as in the early years, it was the Lord who kept us together. As a mother I enjoy the bond and love I have with my three adult children. I enjoy the love they have for me as well, even though they can break my heart at times. I love EVERYTHING about being a grandmother. I love spending time with them. I could spend all day on the floor playing with them. Of course, there is nothing feels better than the love they give back.

Do you drink coffee or tea?

I drink black coffee with an ice-cube. I like my coffee strong!(me too) There’s nothing worse than a wimpy cup of coffee.

Do you prefer vanilla or chocolate?

I usually will get chocolate, but I can be swayed if I can get french vanilla. My favorite indulgence is milk chocolate candy. DOVE brand is the best!

 

Dusty Women-Carolyn D.

The next installment of Dusty Women, bet you thought this series was done. 

Several months ago I came across Titus 2 Tuesday blog posts. Inspired to do the same thing I set out to make a list of my own questions. Women who have encouraged me to be a radical follower of Jesus. Radical in the sense they love God with all the heart, mind and soul and their neighbor as themselves. They are ordinary women who love and serve an Extraordinary God. Women I want to be like so the Word of God will not be dishonored. Titus 2:5

I ask about coffee or tea and vanilla or chocolate to find out who I will be drinking coffee and eating chocolate cake with!!

I wanted a catchy title other than God’s Women, so I asked a friend for help and she said

what is something that defines us? Maybe not where we’re from but where we’re going?

I always love the analogy of following Jesus so closely that you get the dust of your shepherd on you. Following in the footsteps of your Shepherd.  So you could call us Dusty Women.

I have known Carolyn D. for ten years. I count it an honor to know this quiet and humble woman. I haven’t spent as much time with her as I would like because she and her husband come to church from over a half hour away. When we do get to have lunch together with our spouses, she is like a sister…we just pick up where we left off. I interviewed Carolyn a month ago via email. Her response tells you the kind of person she is, humble and transparent.

Sorry this took me over a month to do.  I have thought about my answers to your questions over and over and hoped that they would come out profoundly and awesome but they aren’t…..that isn’t me.  I finally realized a few minutes ago that what matters is that we give testimony to Him when asked to and hopefully bring glory to Him and not ourselves.

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Describe yourself in 5-7 words.

Lover of life; often sliding in sideways!  (I LOVE this description–Jody)

That sounds like “crazy talk” so I think I will say this: daughter, sister, His child, aunt, wife, friend.  I listed these adjectives chronologically in terms of my life (with the exception of friend.  I’ve been blessed to have friends my whole life.)  If I were to prioritize these adjectives, my hope would be to have my description look like this:  His child, wife, daughter, sister, aunt, friend.

Briefly describe how and when you were rescued from the domain of darkness and transferred into the Kingdom of God.   Colossians 1:13.

I do not remember the exact date when I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior.  It was summertime and I was around seven or eight years old.  My best friend had invited me to Vacation Bible School (VBS) at her church and it was during VBS one morning when I placed my faith and trust in Jesus Christ and asked him to come into my life.  Unfortunately for me, by the time I reached my late teens and early 20’s the “things of the Lord” were not of importance to me and I pretty much lived my life as I pleased.  Right after my 24th birthday, I realized I had pretty much reached the end of myself and had a huge void in my life.  It was at that time that I recommitted my life to the Lord and I have never looked back!  Although I regret those “lost years” of my late teens and early 20’s, I know that it was not the Lord who moved away from me, but instead it was me who pushed the Lord away.  He never leaves (Hebrews 13:5); He restores and redeems; His grace and mercy are amazing!

 

What encouragement would you give to a woman of any age who has found out life has not turned out how she envisioned it to be?

Two words:  Trust Him!  When I was around five years old there were three things I dreamed for my life:  to be a wife, to be a mother, and to be a school teacher.  That dream never really changed but never became reality as I had envisioned it would.

As a teenager, I had many opportunities to play mother to my two younger sisters while my mother battled severe depression.  At age 29, I had a failed first marriage and shortly thereafter, saw my parents’ marriage unravel after 40 years of marriage.  A few years later, the Lord brought a wonderful man into my life, my husband Bob.  Since that time, we have dealt with infertility, Bob’s cancer battle over the last nine years, job losses for both of us, and most recently navigating the care of aging parents.

Although my life has not turned out like anything I had envisioned it to be, I have come to realize that it is okay to surrender my dreams to Him.  His plans for me are better.  Bob and I did not get to become parents, but we have been blessed with the privilege of being uncle and aunt to several wonderful nieces and nephews.  As for the school teacher dream, well, 3½ years ago the Lord led me to an administrative assistant position in the high school within the school district where we live.  I work for two principals and although I do not teach, I get to interact with students in a school setting.  For me, it is a great job (and mission field).

Some of my favorite verses are found in Isaiah 43:1-3

”Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.  When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.  When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.  For I am the Lord, your God….”

He has redeemed us; He will not leave us; He will bring us through whatever the situation is.  We simply have to trust Him.

What does God’s Word mean to you?

For me, God’s Word is life.  It is my daily bread.  It is comfort and guidance.  And I especially love the places where God reveals His sense of humor within His Word!

What does the Body of Christ mean to you?

I like to think of the Body of Christ as God’s word in action.  In terms of the church where I worship, LaFayette Alliance Church, the Body of Christ reveals itself as an awesome family.  We all come together with our strengths and weaknesses; sometimes bruised and broken in search of the One True God.  As a part of the body, not only should we seek to be cared for/served, but we should also seek to serve and care for others.

Coffee or Tea?

Tea.  Sweet tea and flavored iced teas!

Vanilla or Chocolate?

Chocolate.  White chocolate, dark chocolate, and then milk chocolate.  My husband will tell you that it’s one of the five basic food groups!

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