Friday, March 7, 2008

Real Life Role Models

Sunday morning at First Baptist Church in Fayetteville, Arkansas, a bubbly new friend bustled toward us before Sunday school started. Brooke wanted to take her kids' photo with Jennie and me. "You know why, don't you?" she inquired with her hospitable southern accent. Pulling a camera from the bag slung over her shoulder, Brooke looked up to see whether we "got it." My questioning glance must have been a cue to my cluelessness. "You're real-life role models. Adults my kids know who love Jesus and live with the same values we want them to have."


My heart stopped for a second, then melted. What an honor. We met only two days prior to this tender moment, but God connected us in a way that empowered and encouraged each of us. I'm grateful for relationship with Brooke. She loves God with her whole heart — and she loves her kids with intentionality.

At first breath, my knees went weak. The responsibility seemed immediately more than I dared think. But by the second breath, Brooke's request re-opened my eyes to the influence the Spirit can have from within me. I went to my knees, grateful for grace. Glad that godly influence doesn't require perfection, but a yielded and willing heart. 

Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. Psalm 139:23, 24

. . . because Father, when Thomas and Abigail see our faces hanging on their fridge, as it pleases your heart, I want them to see you. May they remember the day when the author and her friend came to town as a day when you reached into their young, tender spirits to remind them how special they are in your sight. Thank you for the blessing of being your voice — for ones such as these and others whom you bring into our spheres of influence. Amen.

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