Book Club: “Spiritual Mothering” Part 2

Spiritual Mothering – Nurturing Relationship

Spiritual Mothering – When a woman possessing faith and spiritual maturity enters into a nurturing relationship with a younger woman in order to encourage and equip her to live for God’s glory.

Susan Hunt divides this book into 3 sections. Today we start looking at section 2 – THE MODEL. Susan uses the story of Mary and Elizabeth, found in Luke 1:39-55 as our biblical model. Mary and Elizabeth were blood relatives, but they shared an even greater connection – they were sisters in Christ. Susan says, “When two women join together in the study of God’s Word, prayer, and praise, they enjoy an eternal bond that is possible only because of God’s grace.” How true this is. The women at Missio Dei Fellowship are connected to one another because of God’s grace! Susan explains how this relationship must be cultivated, but she also counsels that “younger women need to follow Mary’s example and seek out older women who display evidence of God’s grace and ask for their help to live for God’s glory… Older women can do the cultivating, but younger women need to do the instigating.”

A nurturing relationship serves. God gives us some clear mandates on how we are to relate to one another:

Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. Ephesians 4:2-3

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant. Philippians 2:3-7

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grieveances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Colossians 3:12-14

This way of relating is not how the world tells us to relate and it is not always the easy thing to do. RELATIONSHIPS ARE MESSY! They take time and energy and require us to let people into our lives. One such relationship started for me when one of the young men in our community group started dating a young woman from another church. Laura and I hit it off from the start. We started  meeting weekly and I must say, it isn’t always easy, but as the testimony from my dear friend Laura shows, it’s worth it!

It has been an encouragement to be in Judy’s life. She’s been teaching me how to live as a submissive wife and a godly woman by modeling it herself. She is not perfect, but she confesses her own sin and is not afraid to speak to my own. Relationships can be messy. We are human and we are sinners, but God’s grace is so much bigger.

Our relationship has blessed Laura, but it has blessed me even more. I love her and seek to be a good example for her. I look to encourage and equip her, but more on that later…

By Judy Love

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