Andrew Murray said: The only humility that is really ours is not that which we try to show before God in prayer, but that which we carry with us, and carry out, in our ordinary conduct; the insignificances of daily life are the importances and the tests of eternity, because they prove what really is the Spirit that possesses us.
My parents sent me to SU with the encouragement to “experience college!” They certainly wanted me to do my best in my classes, but because they had such great friends and such wonderful experiences in college, they wanted me to experience the joy and fullness college life could offer. There were two groups that began those first few weeks of school that became so instrumental in my spiritual growth. One of the first things I did to get involved was to sign up for a discipleship group. And on the first or second weekend of school, we had our annual fall retreat, when all the Freshmen were put in family groups. It was a way to connect with people that first year. I had such a great experience that I wanted to pass it on, so true to the Alabama stereotype, my brother and I hitched up and became parents the next year. 🙂
Yet again, God in His goodness and grace, placed me with a discipleship leader and a “family” that would be instrumental in my college faith walk. After the fall retreat, my “parents” took their roles very seriously to integrate us into college life and to help us know Jesus more. From encouraging notes they sent us filled with bible verses to the gatherings and meals together, David and Karin loved us like Jesus. They also helped us practically … with studies or questions.
Just a couple of weeks after retreat, when I got a call from my leader that I had been placed in her discipleship group, little did I know what kind of influence she would have on my life. To be honest, not all groups were the same. And unlike many leaders, my leader was the real deal! Jane’s faith was genuine and loving, but she also challenged us girls to grow and to walk with Christ in a holy way. To this day, I refer to and quote a book we studied. I know that the one (edition) we read is out of print, but I think there is an updated version that I would highly recommend to young women pursuing Christ. The book by Emalyn Spencer, based on Proverbs 31, was challenging but so good for me. Along with that, I began reading the book by Jerry Bridges called “Pursuit of Holinesss” and really began a personal pursuit of holiness like never before. I saw in Jane what I wanted to maintain in my life with Jesus. Even as a young woman, she displayed a passion for God and a desire and pursuit of purity. It was the highlight of my week to meet with those girls and be taught and loved by her.
The thing that most influenced me about people I’ve mentioned in my posts – my SS teachers, youth leaders, and discipleship leader – was this: their everyday ordinary conduct. Not just when they were teaching or leading.
But their living.
The shades of grace. The chase of God. Everyday of my life.
Thank You, Shepherd of my life. I shall not want. You have given me everything I need for a life fulfilled.