Updated: Sep 29, 2018
"Toto, I have a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore" I thought, staring at the bin overflowing with large foam hats shaped like swiss cheese. Standing in the airport, waiting for Alejandro to get his coffee, I was suddenly aware of my complete ignorance of all things Wisconsinan. It was my first time in "America's Dairyland —" the home of the Green Bay Packers. I didn't know this at the time, though. All I knew was that I was a long way from home and family, having just immigrated to the US.
Arriving at our Destination
Seeing people's houses is like seeing a window into their soul, and this house was no different. The crackling fire provided welcome relief from the bitter Wisconsin cold, and the smatterings of animal carvings and statues punctuated the autumnal shades with a sense of whimsy. Souvenirs hung on the walls, suggesting well-travelled occupants— and a love of adventure. The carefully arranged family pictures spoke of a loving, kind heart. When I saw a lady standing in her kitchen, her arms held out and her red hair glowing under the lights, I felt as though I already knew her. This was the woman I would come to know as "Mama Jean."
What is a Spiritual Mother?
Today there is an epidemic of people who feel lost— those longing for the guidance of someone willing to walk with them, to do life with them. I have been very blessed to have such mentors, but sadly this is not the case for everyone. As ministers, we need to take up the call the spiritual parenthood, to remember that we are called to be a reflection of the Father's heart for His people.
A spiritual mother is a woman who is willing to take the time to invest in others, spiritually and emotionally. She knows you well enough to know your flaws but doesn't look at you any differently. Despite your struggles, she sees your full potential, and there is enough relational equity that she can speak the hard truths to you in love. Her goal is always to build you up, never tear you down. She delights in your successes and wants the very best for you. She comforts you when you are down and brings encouragement.
Out of the Woodwork.
There are those who would make wonderful spiritual mothers but are afraid to step out. To those women I would say— someone needs you! Remember the trials you went through alone in the past and how much it would have meant to you to have another woman take you by the hand and walk beside you in that season. You can be to someone what you didn't have! You may have walked alone, but may they not have to. The wealth of experience you have can greatly bless another.
Imagine how Ruth's life would have been without Naomi's loving guidance— maybe Boaz would have remained too shy to propose to Ruth, fearing her rejection— there possibly would have been no marriage, no children! In a way, Naomi was key in securing the lineage of the future Messiah. Her role was crucial. You have no idea how far-reaching your impact could be. God could want to use you as a spiritual midwife, helping bring forth His will in another's life. If you would like to know what qualities to cultivate to be an effective spiritual mother, you can read my post "Are You Called to be a Spiritual Mother?"
Conversely, if you would like a spiritual mother in your life, don't be afraid to ask. You can pray for God to bring a wise woman across your path who will come alongside you. He will be more than happy to honor your request— He does not want you to walk alone.
Just as it is not good for man to be alone, it is not good for women to walk alone. We need each other— not because we are weak, but because we are stronger together.