I didn’t intend to eavesdrop.
My sole purpose for being at the The Black Bear Coffee Co. in Hendersonville NC was to write while Brian shopped for vintage vinyl finds, five miles down the road.
On the cafe table, three essentials: laptop, a fragrant cup of non-fat goodness, aka lavender latte, and plenty of napkins. I’m messy that way.
As I tapped the keys to the rhythm of the music, the conversation next to me in our tight corner space, prompted a grateful pause more than once.
One woman did most of the talking as if she might be counseling the other. The tone of her voice reflected the zeal in her heart as she shared the gospel, the importance of remaining pure before marriage, and how a woman should expect to be treated by a Christian man. I marveled at her wisdom and the authority with which she shared it.
I couldn’t ignore them any longer.
I removed the earbuds, scooched away from my tiny cafe table and leaned over. I’m not intentionally eavesdropping, *smile* but I want to tell you that you are wise beyond your years, and to hear you share the gospel with such conviction warmed my heart.
One young woman was eighteen. The other, twenty-one. Both broke smiles that would rival wide Autumn skies as we began sharing our faith stories. Their enthusiasm was contagious. When I stood up to return to my table, the eighteen-year-old reached out and said, Our generation needs women like you to pour into us.
And the tears began to pour.
Teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Titus 2:3
Joan Coker was one of those women for me. I was a new Christ-follower when we first became members of the church. We never studied the Word together one-on-one, but I studied her life, her decisions, and prayers, all leaving an indelible mark on me.
I’m still learning what it means to be a Joan Coker. I tend to be overly concerned that I’m intruding in a person’s life, so I step back, wait and watch.
At the risk of being dramatic, none of us have that kind of time. Today⏤more than ever⏤we need each other.
Since meeting the two young women in the cafe, I’m pondering ways to “pour” into the lives of younger women. Below are a few that have come to mind in recent days.
It’s no secret that I’m a die-hard-introverted-homebody. But how can I pour into vessels that aren’t there? God wired us for biblical community. Yes, even us introverts. Meeting in person is undoubtedly the best way to rub shoulders with someone, and I look forward to these opportunities at our church, but perhaps God will also open doors in a different setting as well. For instance, the nearby university that’s nestled in the mountains. Since our move, I’ve sensed a tug to be involved with the young women attending there. Want to join me in praying for God’s lead on that particular adventure? (I’d love to pray for yours too!)
This looks different for us all. Maybe it means reaching out to someone we normally wouldn’t, at the risk of seeming foolish. Perhaps younger women are hesitant to reach out for the same reason. Selma Wilson addresses specific reasons why it’s worth taking the risk in 8 Things Younger Women Need from Older Women in the Church.
Live a Great Story
When the eighteen-year-old woman spoke her words, I was struck with both conviction and resolve. Conviction, because I need to steam less and pour more.
- I’m determined to finish the race with as much⏤if not more⏤zeal than when I began.
- I refuse to fade away from the Church, serving, community, and sharing the gospel just because the age spots darken.
- I now understand the power of the eavesdrop and I want those who might overhear my conversations to be as inspired as I was that day in the cafe.
I want to live a great story⏤not perfect, but pourable.
Lori Roeleveld describes what it means to live a great story (and more!) in her marvelous post, Five Ways to Be an Older Woman Younger Women Can Hear.
After leaving the cafe, it occurred to me that I didn’t know their names and they didn’t know mine. My first thought was to return to the hallelujah corner, but then there was this quiet understanding: Jesus was the focus of our conversation and that One name was really all we needed to know.
How do you pour into the lives of the next generation? Or, how can I pray for you as you set out on this new adventure?
It is only when we pour into others that we ourselves are filled.
Here’s what I’m eagerly watching for in my mailbox this week:
Oh, the anticipation of it all! I love everything about The Joyful Life: Heart & Home Inspiration for Women. And I loved it long before I became an affiliate for this beautiful site. I’m currently working through their Bible study, Counting it All Joy. More details on that at a later date, but today I want to give you a heads up on the opportunity to pre-order the premiere issue. Shipping begins this week.
**As an affiliate, I will receive a small commission when you purchase products from the site using my links. It doesn’t increase your cost and it helps this coffee lover grab a fancy latte every once and awhile. Most importantly, I only promote products that I myself enjoy and value.
Here’s what you’ll find in this premiere issue of The Joyful Life. (I love that every issue will have a Titus 2 Interview. Pour away, sisters!)
INSIDE THE JOYFUL LIFE:
- Heart & Home Inspiration
- Spiritual Growth Articles
- Honest Stories of Real Women
- Stunning Original Images
- Lifestyle Features
- Seasonal Inspiration
- Creative Pursuits
- Lists and Journaling Prompts
- Gift Guide
- Featured Product Reviews | In Every Issue
- Titus 2 Feature Interview | In Every Issue
- The Lost Art Series | In Every Issue
- & MUCH MORE!
Wouldn’t this make the perfect Christmas gift? Pre-order your copy, or yearly subscription, here.
Thank you for spending time with me on the hill today! Hope you’ll join me next week for Tiny House Tuesday.
Subscribers to The Tiny House on the Hill: Be sure to check this month’s letter to download your copy of “30 Slips of Gratitude” to enjoy throughout this month. It’s never too late to start!