Intersecting Life and Faith

Tag: mother (Page 3 of 4)

Dusty Women-Debbie

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 live in New York because of Debbie..well I should say her husband is responsible and God of course. Rob had sent his resume’ to a church in Kingston New York 17 years ago. Allen, Debbie’s husband, would not let us say no. After many months of praying and another phone call from said elder, we said yes and moved to New York.

Debbie has been a faithful, loving and caring friend for 17+ years. We have both moved from the church that brought us together, but I still count her among my dear sister’s in Christ. Some of my fondest memories spent with Debbie are of us sitting at her kitchen table on the farm, drinking coffee. She was the first of many friends I tried to convince I’m a friend before I’m a pastor’s wife…could you introduce me as your friend first? I also convinced her by dusting furniture for her. Debbie is a brave woman…she raised 5 boys and lived to tell about it. She is now a grandmother, loving every minute of it. No picture of Debbie, but you can head over to my Facebook page and find her under Debbie Bailey.

Debbie, would you describe yourself in 5-7 words?

I love God and family.

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

During a VBS in 1972, I walked forward to receive Christ as my Savior.  At that time I was a pre-teen, looking for stability in my life. My parent’s recent divorce and my mom’s change from alcoholic to God’s daughter impacted my life deeply. The pain of my childhood took years to heal; yet, God has heard this girl’s prayer for forgiveness and has amazingly brought me through many trials and setbacks as well as blessings and times of peace and contentment.  As I look back on the 40 + years since that day, I can only see how God has kept me and how He has continued to sanctify me. Over and over God has proven Himself faithful to this, at times,unfaithful girl.

What do you enjoy about being a mother?

The calling of motherhood has been a means for my sanctification. So many times God would bring to mind the very words I spoke to my children and He would gently remind me of the very issue I was dealing with as I was disciplining one of my sons.This culminated in releasing my sons as they became young men, making their own ways.Through the tears, I was reminded that my commitment to raise my sons was my commitment, not theirs.  God would deal with them as His children, just as He continued to mold me into His beloved. I often found it interesting that my husband did not necessarily share my shaky faith in regards to our sons. Allen would often remind me of the truth of the matter, making me wonder, why Allen was so practical, when I was having pity party. God knew what He was doing when He joined us together.

What do you enjoy about being a grandmother?

Another one of God’s blessing. The best part about growing old is…. GRANDCHILDREN! The worst part is living so far away from them.

What encouragement would you give to a young mom struggling to make it through the day?

No matter how busy your day, squeeze in time (5-10 minutes, if that is all you have) to recharge your batteries. Spending time alone reading your Bible or doing something you enjoy. And put into your budget, money for you & your husband to spend time together. There have been times in our marriage that we would visit McD’s for a coffee before or after our weekly grocery trip. It is possible to save for a weekend away by planning & saving just a few dollars a week. An empty nester?  Let God plan those empty hours. I have always been amazed by who or what God brings into my life. Our children need us in a much different way now, and in our case, God has brought us 4 beautiful daughters-in-love (Thanks, Jody for this!).  And now 7 grandchildren.

What does God’s Word mean to you?

God’s Word is Truth. I know I can believe what I read in the Bible when all seems to be falling down around me. If God’s Word says I will provide all your needs (IT DOES SAY ALL!), then even when the cupboard is bare, I can trust him.  God’s Word has so much for us, spending time reading; meditating, memorizing and sharing will build those spiritual muscles. Can you tell I get excited about God’s Word?

What does the body of Christ mean to you?

I can not put into words the countless times God has worked with and through the Body of Christ to minister to me and our family. For me, the Body is as necessary as breathing. But God has also made us a part of the body of Christ and He has many things for us to do. My husband & I were members of our local body for just a few years, yet one of the elders asked if I would be willing to chair the committee for their 150th anniversary. As one of the newer members, I was given the task to put together a celebration of God’s faithfulness. God never meant to have us sit on shelf (or in our pew week after week)!  Listen carefully, He will instruct you in the way He has for you.

Coffee or tea?

Yes, I am very much a mood eater (I have had to train myself to eat good food). So I like my coffee in the morning, iced, and flavored, but I like a cup of tea at times as well.  And nothing beats a tea party with the granddaughters.

Chocolate or Vanilla?

Yes, see above. But added to that vanilla ice cream and only dark (the darker the better) chocolate!

Read the series Dusty Women here.

Dusty Women-Judy

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 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 love the fact that she said we need to be defined by where we’re going not where we’ve been. (Philippians 3:13-14)

Judy is my sister-in-love, the wife of Rob’s brother Rick. I wrote about her in the post Joy & Charlie. Judy lives with her family in Arizona, so we don’t see each other very often. She is among those when I do see them, we just pick up where we left off, in person or on the phone.

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Judy, would you describe yourself in 5-7 words?

Profoundly optimistic, playful, positive and possibly immature.

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

My first trip to the alter was at a Billy Graham movie at the age of 11. I recommitted my life at the age of 20. I had a dream where I was flying. As I was landing, I suddenly was looking at my sleeping body in bed. When I opened my eyes I saw a figure looking out the basement window in my room and voice that asked “If I come for you today are you ready?”  I knew I was not as I was living a very worldly, undisicplined life. I began searching for the answer. It would be a couple of weeks and several churches later when I attended a church where I heard the invitation to recommit my life. I thank Pastor Jeff Hayes for his gentle spirit and bold words.

What do you enjoy about being a mother?

Watching my son enjoy his life and reach his potential. He is the most amazing young man. I really want to be more like him.

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 What encouragement would you give to a young mom struggling to make it through the day.

Lower your expectations! So much of our view of failure is based on our unrealistic expectations. We want to be June Cleaver (historical perfect mom for those who don’t know her). The real truth is June was NOT REAL. She only wore a dress and acted nice at her JOB. She went home to a messy house, yelling kids and was exhausted. I think identifying what has greatest value to eternity, that is the list to work on. That might mean spending more time at Jesus feet, doing crafts with he kids, watching television with the husband even though there are 4000 other things you can think of to do. When I perfect this I will write a book.

What does God’s Word mean to you?

It is hope, promise and above all the explanation for all that is in the master plan. Life does not always happen the way we expect it to, we don’t understand. We are on this huge road trip but we can not see the details of each turn until the exact moment we need to. We really cant see the entire trip at all. His word gives us a road map for the final work. We stay on course we will arrive at the destination, whole and on time.

What does the Body of Christ mean to you? 

It is the completed family. We are in pieces, millions of broken pieces. God fits us together perfectly so we are able to do all we are intended to.  We each have a specific purpose and function individually but when we are together we fill in each others cracks, we become whole, our vessel is able to ‘hold water’.

Coffee or Tea? 

COFFEE, I am just sayin. I like plain, black, rich coffee that is not bitter and that does not leave an after taste.

Vanilla or Chocolate?

Yes. 🙂 I LOVE chocolate, my favorite being white chocolate. Dark or mint following a tie for second.

You  can read about other dusty women here.

 

Dusty Women-Susan

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

The last two questions have nothing to do with being a wife or mother or our walk with the Lord. Just wondering who I’m going to have coffee and 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.(LS)

I love the fact that she said we need to be defined by where we’re going not where we’ve been. (Philippians 3:13-14)

I met Susan, it seems, a hundred years ago. Susan and her family came to our church in Indiana. It was almost twenty years ago that we would have met for the first time, so my memory has faded as to our first meeting. We didn’t spend a lot of time together in the early years of our friendship. She was busy with her two children as a fulltime wife and mother and teaching her children. I was busy with three kids who were 4 1/2 and under. I knew and know I can count on Susan for anything even now as 643 miles separate us. ( I googled the distance).

One memory that has not faded is our time together picking blueberries after a day of Vacation Bible School. We loaded up our kids and headed to the blueberry patch only to find it under water…well up to our knees. Did we turn around and go home? No, we put the buckets on like a necklace and waded through the water and picked. I remember a lot of laughter, mosquito bites and mud. But it was a great day to spend with Susan and her kids.

We don’t get to see each other very often, but to this day she remains a friend that sticks closer than a brother(sister) as she prays for our family and encourages me through fb messages and an occasional text. When we did see each other almost two years ago, she met me at the airport…it was if we had never been apart.

I caught up with Susan as she vacationed with her husband in New York City, my interview had to wait until she got home. I could not find a picture of Susan alone, this is with her daughter Sarah.

296913_10100577117274207_1787210027_nSusan, how and when were you rescued from the domain of darkness and transferred into the Kingdom of God? (Colossians 1:3)

When I was seven years old, a team of individuals from Emmaus Bible School in Oak Park, IL  had been ministering at the small church that my siblings and I would attend every Sunday morning in Knox. It was through the hearing of the gospel during this time that the Lord had drawn me to Himself.  Although I do not exactly recall to whom I had expressed a desire to know more (must have been to one of my older sisters), I distinctly remember one Saturday afternoon when one of the young married couples was staying at our house.  Eloise Dyer took me aside into a bedroom where she clearly explained the plan of salvation.  Although I was very young, I know beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the Lord had drawn me to Himself and accepted me as His very own.  Needless to say, that was merely the beginning of the journey.

 How long have you been married? And how many children do you have?

Married 34 years (7/15/79)
Two children     (28 & 25)

What do you enjoy most about being a wife and mother?

I consider it an honor and a privilege – a very high calling – to be a wife and a mother.  I find it difficult to be able to say there is one thing that I “enjoy most.”  I marvel that the Lord would even allow me to be a wife and mother.  I know that it is often said that a girl/young woman “dreams about her wedding.”  I can honestly say that I never was “that girl.”  I completely identify with the words of Elisabeth Elliot, (paraphrase) “I never thought the Lord would give me a husband…”  So, the fact that the Lord granted that I would be a wife is truly a gift.  After being married, I was keenly aware that the Lord may choose to not grant to us the privilege of becoming parents.  When He did bless us with one child and then another, it was nothing short of a miracle (in my eyes).  I would like to think that Proverbs 31:25-31 are a few verses that have helped to bless, sustain, and encourage me in the role of wife and mother.  The roles of mother and wife can be rewarding, yet exasperating and humbling.  If humility and forgiveness are not part of the equation, then reward cannot result.

If you could encouragement to a young wife what would it be? A young mother?

Get into the Word REGULARLY.  It must be more than church on Sunday morning.(highlight mine)  Nothing can substitute for the pure, unadulterated Word of God.  It IS our/your (young wife/mother) life blood, our sustenance. I would strongly encourage her to put up hedges to help “avoid” the pressures of conforming to society – not only in secular society, but influences that may enter “the church” and “everyone” seems to be “on board” with the latest fad, myth, whatever.  The Word of God will always prevail over the latest “theory.”  Remember, there is nothing new under the sun. 🙂  Rather than “wanting to be a part of a clique,” test things according to Scripture.  ALWAYS seek to nurture your relationship with the Lord first and then your husband.  Praying with your spouse is critical!

What does Gods word mean to you?

It IS my daily Bread.  Sadly, too frequently, I fail to partake of the nourishment that is essential for “right thinking.”  Needless to say, when I fail to feast on the Bread, it is obvious. 🙁

 What does the body of Christ mean to you?

The body of Christ represents a oneness, a unity, the desire to walk alongside, encourage, rebuke (when appropriate), support, share in one another’s burdens.  “Body” is reflective of many parts, not isolationism.  It requires “working together,” not separation.  As a member, a part of the body of Christ, we each have a responsibility before our Lord to be obedient in nurturing the entire body. If we are not healthy spiritually, we cannot expect to be a viable part of His body.

Coffee or Tea?

Coffee

Vanilla or Chocolate?

Vanilla

You can read about other women who are getting dusty here.

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