And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works. – Hebrews 10:24
For over a decade, younger women clustered around me like hummingbirds to purple salvia. Swooping into my life for a season, gathering fuel to live a purposeful and spiritual life. I had no idea way back then why I should be graced by this charm, I only know they peered attentively at me over my kitchen counter. They spilled open their hearts all honest and vulnerable while I soaped up dishes. Some sat at my dining room table eating Sunday supper with my family, tucked in beside us as our own.
These girls often called or texted me. Some even Skyped and Facetimed. Over the years, we’ve met together in small groups for Bible study or book clubs. We’ve attended cooking classes together, gone on writing retreats. We’ve taken small town excursions, planted flowers in my front yard. Year in and year out, no matter the season it seemed that there was always a younger woman by my side. It was natural, organic. And they were all looking for the same thing: the nectar of age and wisdom that only an older woman provides.
By simply opening my heart and making room for more than just my children – I was fulfilling a great commission on my life, participating in a special ministry that God fashioned for me – to encourage the dear daughters in my world to love God with body, heart and mind in their unique situations. To train young women to be strengthened in the inner being.
After nearly a decade of being available to mother the young people in my proximity and beyond, I have discovered God’s specific ministry plan for me: To boldly encourage and lead dear daughters. And this is the simple way I do it: By being a spiritual mama.
It’s not complicated. It doesn’t require a degree in counseling or theology. It just means I stay authentically connected to Jesus. It means I am doggedly determined to maintain and remember my identity as an ‘older woman.’ Not someone looking to be popular or hip or eternally young; rather a woman who is sober to the ways of the Spirit. Enthused and identified with the things of God. Someone who does not let her own struggles and disappointments get in the way of her children’s best interest. This is my heart for the dear daughters God brings me. As long as there are young women in need of spiritual guidance; I am not just a minister of the gospel, I am even more: I am a spiritual mother.
Though I struggled when my own children left the nest, I have realized this amazing truth: a woman never need have an empty nest. And so, a mother’s job is never over.
The world is full of dear daughters that need a godly woman a few steps ahead. They need someone to help them navigate life as a young woman in all the seasons of life: During college, starting a new job, marrying a man, becoming a mother.
There are so many dear daughters in the world who need a hand and a heart to follow … the world needs more spiritual mamas. Older, godly women who realize that mothering is a sacred trust from God. Women who gratefully acknowledge age and experience in order to lead a younger generation. Women who embrace the fact that mothering is a celebration of life and goodness and God.
We need to have these conversations together, one by one, and celebrate what it looks like to embrace the simplicity and beauty of being a godly woman.
This post is taken from Susie’s latest book, Dear Daughters: Love Letters to the Next Generation.
Susie Davis is an author, speaker and co-founder of Austin Christian Fellowship. She is married to her high school sweetheart, Will Davis, Jr., and they have 3 delightful young adult children (Will III, Emily, and Sara) who are all married and living their one beautiful life. Susie’s podcast, Dear Daughters, is full of wisdom and joy, offering women young and old the kind of comfort and companionship they crave. Aside from family and ministry, Susie is hopelessly addicted to horseback riding, McDonald’s coffee and pink geraniums. She loves bird watching, creek walking and connecting the dots between God and nature. Her favorites include cooking, gathering people at her big French farm table and asking deep questions. You can find her at susiedavis.org.