Yesterday I had lunch with an old friend of 33 years. We had not seen each other in 15! When I first met her, I was the new kid at our small Christian school and the only Episcopalian. Everything was strange to me. The core of 7th grade girls were welcoming. They began to show me what it looked like to truly follow Jesus. Even though we were all so young, they actually lived what they believed. That impressed me. For the first time I saw that learning about God and obeying His word was doable… even cool. Where I came from, I had been the good kid who obeyed the rules, these folks held a higher standard. They loved each other and that challenged me.
Most of my growing up was spent in the world of Ballet. From a young age I was completely obsessed: body, mind and soul. This new realm of God-loving people was sorta foreign to me and somewhat conflicting with the other. A struggle began in my heart. Would I allow God full control at ballet too? Without realizing it, these girls showed me it was possible. When I had the chance to share that fact yesterday, I saw my friend’s eyes well-up with tears. She had just been a young girl back then with her own hurts and struggles, yet God had strategically placed her in my path for such a time as that. He knew I desperately needed a pattern to follow and who I would look up to.
God is so gentle that way. He gives me what I need, when I need it. Never more than I can handle, just enough… and usually with a bit of a challenge. I’ve grown and changed a lot. Thank Goodness! I am not who I was, but surely I am not all I will be. God continues His work, bringing new examples for me to follow.
Thank You, God, for today’s mentors (Alex, Amanda, Bobbi, Elizabeth, Kathryn, Kelly, Nancy, Marianne, my mom, my sisters… my in-laws). What a wealth of women I’m surrounded by! You haven’t left me to figure it out alone… I have living, breathing patterns to glean from – Your mercy is unfailing.
ForGlorySake! – Anna