I love "cute" clothes and more than that I LOVE "cute" shoes. I have more jewelry than one person needs. I come by it quite honestly. My Grammy Black had more shoes than anyone I have ever met and a different necklace for every outfit. Recently God has been teaching me and showing me something about legacy. The importance of those He has put in my life and the necessity for a godly legacy I leave for my own children, especially Elise. How have I been "clothed" and what am I doing to ensure Elise is "clothed" to fully follow Him?
(My mom, Sister, and me. Last photo I have of all 3 of us together)
A rich legacy of ladies have shaped my life. In fact, there is no way to name them all. But along the way, God has brought different ones into my life who have "dressed" me. They have profoundly impacted who I am. I can't help but think of these ladies this week. A week we look for the perfect gift, card, and meal for the ladies in our life. Mother's Day. So my thoughts are taken to those ladies who have "clothed" my life.
"Bless the Lord, O my soul!
O Lord my God, Thou art very great;
Thou art clothed with splendor and majesty..." Psalm 104:1
My Mom opened her house to anyone who wanted to come. A lady who wanted the best for her kids. She taught me to love crafts and how to do some great bargain shopping! She loved to laugh. She loved to sit and talk. And a good Garth Brooks song could send her into tears. So hard to believe it has been almost 8 years since I last picked her up for a day of shopping. My mom "clothed" me with an open heart to others and I am thankful.
My sister is such a fun, hardworking young lady. She is as sweet as they come and would do anything for anybody. She reminds me a lot of my mom in so many ways. Thankful for someone I can call "whenever."
My grandmothers are both no longer on this earth to see. But I am thankful for the time I was able to share with both. My Grammy Black made excellent breakfast, loved to pick on you, and could always be found on her front porch. She sewed some of the cutest clothes for me as a child and was there for us when my parents divorced. My Grandma Speegle gave me one of my first Bibles. I didn't spend a whole lot of time with her as a child, but am thankful for the conversations as an adult I was able to have with her about the Lord. They all have "clothed" me with life experiences, love, and memories.
"The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places;
Indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me." Psalm 16:6
Warren and I married when I was 18. Wow! That seems so young now! But I am so thankful we did. (We have been married alomost 17 years and that boy still has my heart completely! ) God created in my heart a "different spirit" (Numbers 14:24) that desired to make a home that was completely centered on Him. I am thankful for those who helped "dress" me along the way to strive for a home like that.
Kathy, Rhetta, and Richi were ladies I watched closely as I was seriously dating Warren and then as I was engaged to him. I watched how they did life with their men and children. I looked at the way that set up home. How they set the table when they cooked meals. How they disciplined their children. These ladies "clothed" me with a desire to do good to my family. Take care of them and their needs.
"She looks well to the ways of her household,
And does not eat the bread of idleness." Proverbs 31:27
Janet was our pastor's wife. I had no idea at the time why I was so interested in how she lived as a pastor's wife. But it is very clear now :) I remember admiring her so much for her passion to be in the Word and teach other ladies. I attended my first Precept class with her. Loved it. Loved studying the Word in depth. The Bible I use and tresure so much now was given to me from her when I was 20 years old. She "clothed" me with a desire to be a woman of the Word.
"Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain,
But a woman who fears the Lord,
she shall be praised." Proverbs 31:30
Jeania and Beth showed me a love for sharing Jesus. When I was a new Christian, Beth gave me the opportunity to serve in VBS. I fell in love head over heels that day with children's ministry. That week in VBS began an adventure that would last to the present. It has had different seasons and opportunities, but I am am ready and willing at any moment to teach and share Jesus (salvation) with children. Jeania showed me so many ways to share Jesus, especially with children. I absolutely love to share Jesus with children. They "clothed" me with the desire to serve and share Jesus.
Lisa was a youth pastor's wife who "clothed" me with a desire to love life. She had a smile and joy every time we saw her while we lived in Denison, Texas. Precious lady with a precious family.
My dear friend Laura has "clothed" me so much through the years. I truly owe my discipleship to her. She has "clothed" me with firm resolve as a Christian, perseverence in all situations, faithfulness, strength. She is one that I have seen "cry and walk." (Ruth, Kelly Minter)
"Strength and dignity are her clothing,
And she smiles at the future." Proverbs 31:25
My sweet friend Allison was placed in my life at just the right time. Plain and simple, she "clothed" me with what it means to be a friend and love my family like crazy.
There has been so many older ladies who have "Clothed" me along the way. I really learned to cook from my mother-in-law. And I did learn a little determination from her as well. And oh my, the beautiful "older" ladies along the way are too numerous to count! The ladies like Sharon, Vestal, Nada, and Mrs. May. Such sweet spirits. Ladies who haven't let age, health, or life circumstances stop them from following Him. Their lives remind me to be "clothed" in a "...gentle and quiet spirit..." (I Peter 3:4).
God continues to send "Designer" "clothes" my way. I am Blessed daily by Geraldine who prays everyday for my eldest. Her faithfulness reminds me to be "clothed" in prayer. And my sweet friend Stacey who prays and then puts her prayers into action with students.
"Pray without ceasing;" I Thessalonians 5:17
Then there's Ruth and Esther. Sarah and Hannah. Mary. Lydia. The ladies in Timothy's life. Everyday God uses these ladies in my life to remind me to be "clothed" in the full armor of God, the fruit of the Spirit, humility, willingness, and love. A reminder to forgive, have a clear conscience, consider it all joy, and do nothing out of selfish ambition.
So, I put on the best "clothes" that come my way because I know I have my own little fashion diva who will put on what she sees. I pray she will imitate her Father in heaven and be "clothed" with His ways. I pray that she meets ladies along the way that teaches her to put on the best "pearls", "diamonds", "purses", "jeans", and "wedges" a girl can wear.
"...be imitators of Christ..." Ephesians 5:1
Thank you ladies in my life. I am blessed!
Happy Mother's Day!