Wednesday, February 06, 2008

My Precious Spiritual Momma...

I had to write today to ask you to pray for my Spiritual Momma, Janan.

First, I'd like to give you a little background so that you'll know why I cherish her so.

We met in 1993, and at the time neither of us knew Jesus, but both of us thought we did. Even back then, she was a gift in my life. I was a newly divorced, about to be mixed up in yet several more messed up relationships, totally lost, hurting, raw and confused young woman.

My life was a MESS! I can't even begin to tell you how messed up it was, and on how many different levels!

Then God brought Janan and her sweet husband and amazing boys into my life. I was the person who kept their children when they had to travel, and before I knew it, I was their "adopted" daughter.

Then, I allowed my sinful life to put a wedge between us for some years. But, when I gave my life to Jesus, the Holy Spirit tugged on my heart to write them and tell them about my salvation, and to seek restoration in our relationship.

So, I poured my heart out in a letter to Janan, and within a week my phone rang and I heard her sweet voice on the other end. She was almost yelling, "Jesica! We all gave our lives to Jesus too!"

I weep just writing this, because it was such an amazing thing to hear, and I was so thrilled to know that we'd all live forever with Jesus one day. The joy in her voice was just bubbling out!

Very quickly, we were all reunited. By this time, Janan was in a different season in her life. The boys were grown and one was off in college already, while the other was about to go.

In addition, she and her husband had opened their home to have her mother come in and live with them. In an age where we so often can't be bothered by the inconvenience of making a home for our elderly parents, I was greatly ministered to as I watched my sweet friend lovingly care for her mother until the Lord called her home.

So often, I would observe her choices and quietly weigh them against Titus chapter 2.
(See below) She modeled for me, and still does, what it means to live as a Titus 2 woman. Her life is not easy, not by any stretch of the imagination, but she is so faithful to her calling as a wife, mother, daughter, friend, and follower of Christ.

After the Lord called her mother home, He then laid on the heart of her husband that they needed to once again open their home..but this time it was to be to her father and his wife.

His wife was a challenge, yet my precious "Momma" loved on her, and lived the life of a true believer for her step-mother to watch.

Shortly before her death, the Holy Spirit called my "Momma" in to her step-mother's bedside to share without reserve, the plan of salvation.

Her step-mother made a confession for Jesus Christ, and He called her home shortly thereafter.

By this point, she then had a grieving and ailing father to care for, which she did with the same loving abandon that she had for her mother and step-mother.

Life for my sweet friend became all about compassionate caring for her family for this season in her life.

By contrast, I was a new mommy...growing very tired of dirty bottoms, dirty clothes, dirty dishes, and no paycheck.

But the Lord used my "Momma's" testimony in my life over and over to remind me of what was really important...of what mattered (and still matters) most. She lived the truth for me, that my first ministry will always be at home.

I saw her sacrifice. I saw her lay her life down over and over again for those that the Lord had called her to minister to...her family.

While I thought I needed to be out changing the world for Jesus, she was being used of God as a minister of reconciliation to her parents and to her step-mother.

Oh, how God has used her life to mature me. To minister to me. To bless me.

For the next several years, my Momma cared for her Daddy, and juggled the responsibilities of home and of owning a company. To say the least, she was working her patootie off!

She cared for her Daddy in her home until his health declined to such a point that they needed round the clock care. Once that day came, she was faithfully by his side at the nursing home just as often as she could be....taking him his favorite food, spending time talking with him, and making sure that he knew how much Jesus loved him and wanted to spend eternity with him.

As a result, her Daddy too, chose the narrow path of Jesus Christ after watching Him work through His ambassador, Janan, for years.

This week, her sweet Daddy passed from death to life eternal.

Janan's life teaches me on a daily basis that all God wants from us is to be faithful to that which He calls us. We don't get to choose "our" ministries..we must instead choose to be faithful to His.

I am so very thankful for you, Nan. I love you with all of my heart, and I praise God that He has given me such a Godly example of a Titus 2 woman, in you.

You can never know how precious you are to me!

It would mean so much to my sweet "Momma" if you would lift her up in prayer on Friday, for that is when her Daddy's funeral will be.

There are many, many people who will be there who do not know Jesus Christ. Her pastor will be sharing the Gospel. Please pray that many will come to salvation on Friday, and will choose to live from that day forward as dedicated followers of Jesus Christ.

I love you, Nan. I love you so much!

In His Love,

Titus 2:3
Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good,
Titus 2:4
so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children,
Titus 2:5
{to be} sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.

And also..

Titus 2:11
For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men,
Titus 2:12
instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age,
Titus 2:13
looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus,
Titus 2:14
who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds.


Woman in the Tent said...

I did pray for your friend every time I thought about it last Friday.

Thanks for commenting on my blog, Jes. I've missed you lately. You ok?

How was the trip to Chattanooga?


Jes said...

Thank you for praying, Laura!

I'm well. We were just gone for several days.

I'm hoping to post soon...just trying to play catch up!

Chattanooga was wonderful! It was a sweet time of fellowship, rest, and teaching.