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.
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) Sue Maloney gets dust on her. She was one of the first ladies I met over ten years ago when we came to visit Lafayette Alliance Church. Rob was in meetings so she loaded me and our four kids in her van and took us for a tour of Syracuse. I felt like I had known her all my life, and you will feel the same after this interview.
Sue, how and when did God rescue you from the domain of darkness and transfer you into His Kingdom? (Colossians 1:13)My second grade teacher got me into a church camp even tho I was not of age. (Lacked six weeks)There I was introduced to Jesus, a friend that sticks closer than a brother. My mother was ill and I needed a friend. Because of my conversion my whole family attended church and my brother and I were baptized then next year after. I was raised in that bible believing church. I attended a religious college for three semesters before transferring to the University of Idaho. I met Ralph the summer before my senior year. After our first child was born I was drawn back to The Lord.
Tell us a little about yourself.I have been married 51 years. We have three children 50' 49, and 48 as of July 9th, 2013. Being a wife and mother is what I thought all girls were suppose to do. I was a better teen mother than baby mother but it could have been that I was worn out most of the time.
What advice would you give a young mom?One piece of advise I would give a new mom would be to take care of herself physically and spiritually so she has something to give her children. What is your encouragement regarding God's Word and becoming a student of it? Bible study enriches your whole outlook on life,shapes and changes you from the inside out. If you want to be what God meant you to be you have to be close to the Maker.
Chocolate or vanilla?As for chocolate or vanilla. I like vanilla because I get tired of chocolate and not a fan of dark chocolate . Sue and her husband have recently been on several short term missions trips to Africa. The grass does not grow under their feet as they help in our AWANA program, Sue teaches womens Bible studies and Ralph is one of our elders. They have both learned to not waste their lives as they follow their Savior in whatever He calls them to do. She recently spoke for a few minutes in a missions presentation we had during our Sunday School hour. She emphasized the importance of knowing God's Word inside and out. I couldn't agree with her more. Are you getting the dust of your Savior on you?
I love the fact that she said we need to be defined by where we're going not where we've been. Philippians 3:12-13...
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.
Elaine Miller is a wife, mother, grandmother, author, speaker, a sister in Christ and the first dusty woman I wanted to interview.
Elaine, would you tell us a little about yourself?
I'm a small town girl with a big time heart for Jesus. Raised in Beaver, PA, I was the fourth of six children. Graduated from college and worked in Washington, DC, where I met a young Navy Corpsman named Dan Miller. We married five months after meeting (I don't recommend such a brief courtship, btw). This year we celebrate our 43rd anniversary. We've been blessed with three children who make us laugh and eight grandchildren who amaze us with their antics. In mid-career Dan and I were called to Pastoral ministry. In my 50's God called me to write and speak for Him. I am the author of three books and a member of the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association. Outdoors is my favorite place. Hiking, kayaking, x-country skiing, biking are my favorite activities. I don't like to do anything that requires scissors!
How long have you followed Jesus? and briefly when were you rescued from the domain of darkness? Colossians 1:13
Ha! This question made me realize I've lived half of my life without Jesus and half with Jesus. The last 32 years following Him and loving Him definitely outshines the first 32 years without Him. I remember that August 1980 day well. My life was a mess, my marriage was a mess, I was a mess. Desperate for peace, I cried out to God, "I believe in You Jesus. I give my life to You Jesus. Do with me whatever you please." Wow! He pleased to do a lot. He gave me a new heart empty of mess and filled with Christ.
What does God's Word mean to you?
When I believed in Jesus Christ as my Savior at age 32, I hungered for all He had for me. I love to read and my head was stuffed with worldly words contained in ungodly books. I desired to empty my brain of the garbage and fill my head with God's Word. For one year I read nothing but the Bible. No newspapers, magazines, I didn't watch a TV show. It was the best year of my life. So good, I did it again a second year. God's Word is a lifeline. I've read the Bible seven times. God reveals more of Himself to me through His Word, and He guides me for what I need at that moment. People who don't read the Bible are missing a treasure of peace and joy and direction from the Creator of the Universe, the Author of our Faith. How can we not want all He has for us contained in His Word.
If you could say anything to today's young woman, what would it be?Don't believe the worldly lies. You are beautiful. God created you perfectly in His image for His purpose. You are loved and you are loveable. Fix your eyes on Jesus. Have a love affair with Him. The world will disappoint you, but Jesus will fill you with joy!
What encouragement would you give to a young mom? a struggling mother of teens or a mother facing the empty nest?To a young mom: James 3:2 (GWT) says "All of us make a lot of mistakes...." You'll make a lot of mistakes. Your child will make a lot of mistakes. You aren't perfect, nor is your precious little one. Forget the flaws and hold on to the good in your child. Struggling mother of teens: Listen to your teens. Love your teens. Take them on special dates, go for walks, keep communication open. Have fun with them and they'll have fun with you! Don't enter teenage parenting years with the attitude that teens don't talk to adults. I think it's the adults who don't talk to teens. Teens are desperate for your love at this confusing time in their lives when they are half child and half adult. Facing the empty nest? Life isn't about the child anymore. You and your lover need to reconnect. Honeymoon. Plan romantic nights and getaways. The divorce rate for people over 50 has doubled in the last 20 years. It's time to care for your marriage. I advise couples when they take their youngest away to college (or wherever they go), to not return home. Take the next days and plan a romantic time with your spouse, away from home. By the time you return, you'll not be so sad that the nest is empty.
What does the Body of Christ mean to you?When I believed in Jesus Christ as my Savior, I immersed myself in the local church — the body of Christ. There I was weekly fed God's Word in the Sunday sermon, taught God's Word in Bible Study and adult Sunday School, and watched the Christian life lived through the testimony of the older and younger saints. I was loved, prayed for, encouraged, and provided for in times of need. The body of Christ is God's instrument to reach the world for Christ, and to grow new believers into a deeper walk with Christ. My life is a testimony of the power of the body of Christ in an individual's life. Without the body of Christ, my faith walk would be aimless and distant. God gave us a great commandment, to "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind and with all your strength. And love our neighbor as yourself..." Mark 12:30-31a. If the body of Christ would do this. Our churches would be packed with people asking what is this Hope and Love we have within us. I thank God I found a church that loved me into the Kingdom and grew me up in Christ.
Coffee or tea?
Tea and honey in the morning, tea and honey in the evening, tea and honey at supper time. I'm a tea and honey girl and I love it all the time.Check out Elaine's website and blog at Splashes of Serenity