women of Spirit: three portraits

I have often prayed for spiritual mentors — older women who just know how to love Jesus.  I thought my spiritual mentors would come in the form of wrinkled faces and saggy arms, hands that were agile in the kitchen and in the garden.  I expected gentle counsel on how to potty train Isaiah, how to put him to bed at night, and how to get him to eat his vegetables.  I thought my mentors would be, like, 50 or 60 years old.

Instead, it turns out they’re my peers.  They’re women close to my age, women I developed acquaintance with quite by accident, or so it seemed at the time.  They go through their struggles with grace, inspiring me.  Sometimes I fear being too vocal about Christ on my blog.  I don’t want to turn away people who don’t believe in Him.  But to these women, life is Christ, and because of them, I am challenged never to treat Him as an appendage but rather as my breath and my heart and my soul, out of which comes all my other interests and passions and talents.

Rachel loves the Lord with seriousness and dedication.  She has been my sanity in this city where friends are so hard to come by.  She gives so much, blessing other women with the gift of community and fellowship.  She teaches her boys to love God, to have respect, to know right from wrong.  I have never seen her waver, never heard her badmouth someone, never watched her go bad on her word.  She’s solid, she’s faithful.

Danielle — she is amazing.  She’s packing up to move to Iraq as a missionary.  As I’ve learned to know her during her time in Dallas, she has been solely focused on spreading the gospel.  That is her reason for living.  She has had me pray about whether marriage should be part of her future, and she is determined to not marry anyone who is not equally compelled to preach the good news to all nations.  Her parents died last year in a flood, and she came through the turmoil believing that their heart for missions was the legacy they were passing on to her.  And so she’s leaving, quitting her high-paying job, to love the lost of Iraq.

And then there’s Jessica.  I barely know her, I’ll admit, though I hope that changes someday.  But as I read her blog, and she talks about her day and the little baby growing inside her and her love for her husband, I am just abudantly, exceedingly blessed to watch those parts of her life.  She loves the Lord.  She dedicates herself to developing the roles in which God has placed her, and she does it with joy.  She seems so excited to live with fulness of life, even if it’s in the middle of Nowhere, Kansas (you know, where I grew up).

These women give me hope — hope that messed up, wavering me can live with purpose.  Hope that maybe if I lift this dirty, colored glass up to the sun, Jesus can shine through me like he has through Rachel and Danielle and Jessica.  And hope that maybe I can be beautiful, too.

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  1. I hope that we can visit each other in person sometime, Carrie!

    I appreciate your blog. Your honesty and desire for simplicity is refreshing esp. because you do not try to appear to have “attained” but are striving forward. I am always turned off by blogs that talk as if they have “attained”. In this life I think there is no “attaining” only a growing toward the right direction.

    • clbeyer
    • May 23rd, 2008

    Thank you, Jessica. Your comments about “attaining” really hit home as I was reading my book tonight. It inspired the new post. 🙂

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