My First Heroine

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We often use our mothers as a metric. We measure our futures against their pasts, we line up our achievements with their expectations, we study their health for indications of our weakness and we plan to never be like them (at least that is what we say when we are 16). I used to watch my mom, the way she would do her makeup, the way she poured over scripture—waiting for the Lord to reveal Himself—the way she and my dad interacted-the love, the fun, and the joy. My mom was the first heroine I knew.

I want to love like her, eloping on her senior skip day with my dad. That crazy day has defined much of her life, she married, she had two girls, and she is still madly, deeply in love with that man she ran away with. I want to live a life that takes risks, I want to be a woman who goes after what I love.

I want to be passionate like her. She seeks the Lord with a passion that can be intimidating. Her thoughts and ideas on women’s roles in the church have grown, along with mine. It was amazing to watch her ask the questions I had been seeking the answers to. It was a privilege to have her push me to conclusions and for her to allow me to push her and hand over resources. I want to be a woman who passionately pursues God’s truth, even when it means changing.

I want to have courage like her; she tries new things and gets good at them. Although there may be some trepidation, she is often open to the process. She will take on a challenge, become an expert and lead others while allowing them to learn and lead in their own way. I want to be a woman who has the courage to try and fail, yet also know that obedience to the Lord is the true measure of success

This is not a eulogy, this is not me saying goodbye to my mom. Rather, this is me, turning 34 and measuring my life next to my mother’s. Next to the woman who helped mold me, the woman who introduced me to Fanny J. Crosby, the woman who bought me A Heart for the City on Valentine’s Day my senior year, the woman who let me be the woman God wanted me to be. I want to be like her when I grow up, and I think I might be more like her than I give myself credit for.

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