I’ve learned much from these women that we’ve written about each week, but what I’ve learned from them as a whole happens to be verbatim what my fellow writers have already shared this week. However, it occurred to me that what I’ve learned from the women of the early church, I’ve also learned at the same time from the women in my small group, the women of the present church. It’s been modeled out before my very eyes and in each of their writings.
That’s what I want to share, what I’ve learned the past 12 weeks from some of the most incredible women I’ve ever known. As Cindy so beautifully put it, WE are the women of the church. These amazing ladies whom I’ve had the privilege of seeing firsthand, God use daily. They’ve impacted my life in tremendous ways and have become so very precious to me. They are real women doing extraordinary things for the kingdom because they are surrendered to the Father for His use.
Each week they encouraged and spoke life over me. What they brought to the table each week was so much more than a blog post. They imparted wisdom, were transparent about themselves and in doing so reflected the beauty of Christ and His unending grace. I’m honored and humbled to call these amazing women my friends. To list everything that these beautiful women have taught me would exceed the word count limit 100 times over, so here are some highlights. Many of these things I already “knew” but it wasn’t till these women did I fully comprehend.
From our faithful small group leader, Cindy, we’re given a beautiful example of what it looks like to remain humble as the Lord uses us. I now understand what it means to be Beautiful in Christ, by “Be you till you’re full of Him” as she so authentically walks out. In Melanie I see the value of a dedicated mother, wife and daughter. I share the same titles, but to see it modeled out in her I’m reminded of my own value in those roles when I forget how significant they really are and what a difference they make.
Tonya, by her beautiful example, has taught me what freedom there is in challenging yourself to believe and embrace the truth in Psalm 139:13-14. We were all created intentionally to be exactly who we are and when we are, with a purpose fit for the Master’s use. I’ve learned from Joni that our abilities lie in Him and it is He who equips us to walk out the dreams that He’s placed in our hearts. “The world will make room for your gifting.”
Ginny has taught me what it really means to stay focused when “the enemy is trying to distract us, God is trying to grow us.” The wisdom she’s shared to purpose to stay unoffended and see the good in people always and love no matter what, has ministered to me deeply. And from Andrea…the wisdom that flows from her each week I covet. My daughter’s name is Selah. I’ve always known the meaning of the word, but until this semester, I haven’t applied it’s meaning to all aspects of my life. I have found myself “pausing and thinking about” everything and then “giving God praise” after feeling the challenge to do so since reading the closing of each of Andrea’s posts.
These women we’ve studied weren’t so different from us. As Ginny so eloquently said earlier this week, we all have a story. We all have a purpose. God strategically placed us in this moment in this time for those very reasons and He uses us exactly where we’re at…if we’re willing and submitted. Our story, every story, every life will impact others’ lives.
“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17
Tears escape my eyes as I reflect on my small group ladies and the effect they’ve had on me. Thank you all for sharpening me. I am forever impacted by your surrendered hearts to the Lord. You are brilliant, gifted and beautiful. I love every one of you so much and pray abundant blessings over you.
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Your Turn: What have you learned from those God has placed in your life? How have they impacted you? Are they sharpening you? Please share with us below, we would love to hear from you! ~ Heather