I was recently asked by a group of friends from my church to share a short story about someone who has shown me the way to Jesus? I am happy to say, it will not be a short story. As far back as I can remember I have been blessed with knowing amazing women of faith. I began attending church at a very young age and my very first memory of someone sharing Jesus with me was my Sunday school teacher, “Birdie.” Everyone loved her, she loved everyone equally in return. I remember hearing stories from the Bible about Jonah, David & Goliath, Zacchaeus and the sycamore tree, just to list a few. She read stories, lead the children’s choir and always had goodies and snacks. Summers growing up I attended VBS and she would share stories of the Bible and helped us create great craft projects. There are lots of uses for popsicle sticks & glue, and glitter & paper. When I was just starting the seventh grade, I met a lot of new people when my brother and I switched schools, from public to private. My brother made friends easily and his cuteness definitely didn’t hurt him much. I eventually made friends as well, a particular family of three sisters and a brother became close friends of mine as well as my whole family. I became close friends with the middle sister Marcie; our parents didn’t understand why after being in school all day together, our need to be on the telephone after school. Marcie’s family had something I wanted…I just wasn’t at all sure what “it” was exactly. It was something I couldn’t find words to describe right away. Their family was not much different than mine; a mom, dad and kids; they went to church, went to work, and went to school. After some time and reflection, I told my mom that I wanted to talk with the pastor from the church affiliated with the private school my brother and I attended. It was on that night through a conversation with that pastor, I realized it was Jesus I saw in them and that I needed to ask Jesus to save me. God is the Great Creator, He knows our hearts long before we were formed in our mothers wombs. Our lives are not mere chances but part of God’s Divine plan. I thank God for the gift of the Kempf family. I saw Jesus in their lives through their actions, sharing and values. As time past and all our lives changed, we all began chasing after our own dreams. I went off to college and lost contact with lots of people and friends from home. I met lots of new people and tried my best to “fit” in. I met lots of new people during my college days, all made lifelong impressions upon me and as much as I wish I could list them all by name I would inevitably miss someone; however, I would like to briefly mention three very special and dear women that befriended me and to this day I’m not exactly sure why they did, but I am ever so thankful they did. Linda, Margaret and Nancy…all upper class mates to me, here I was a shy, backward, county girl who was as awkward as the day is long to say the least. I loved them like sisters. They gave me something I still have to this very day, “worthiness.” There was nothing to be gained for them by befriending me, but they did. I am grateful for each one of them and through the years we have shared the love of Jesus with one another, we have comforted one another through grief and sickness, and we have cheered and celebrated together. We may be separated by place, time and distance but our friendship and love for one another is ever-present in our hearts and minds. God has continued to bless me over the past several years, I have had the pleasure of meeting three remarkable women ministers. All have motivated and challenged me in different ways over the years since we met, when hearing them speak it ignites a spark within me. They all are vastly different in their approach and delivery of God’s message to the world. One is free and charismatic, one is scholarly and formal while the other is gracious and humble, they all have had a profound influence on me and are sources of great encouragement to me. I continue to seek and to learning what God’s Will is for my life. I know there’s more I can and should be doing. I feel a “calling” of sorts, I strive to share my faith with others through my actions, words, Twitter & Instagram accounts, my blog, and through fellowship with my friends, family, church and my community. I have two additional women who need to be recognized for their contributions, character and influence on me. Without them, I would not be here. These two women were strong, gentle, determined, kind, caring, loving, dependable, respected, admired, and accepting…they are a part of me, I am part of their legacy…my mom and her mom, my grandmother. I have no idea what my legacy will be but my hope is to be remembered as a believer and follower of Jesus, a daughter, a granddaughter and friend.
~Blessings and Peace~