Your Investment Matters

Intentional Invest

Growing up there was nothing sweeter than standing on a chair beside my granny while she prepared an apple pie. Granny would roll out the crust, place it perfectly inside the pie plate, and then stack it full of fresh sliced apples. Finally, she would crisscross strips of dough on the top, brush them with egg and add a sprinkle of sugar.

Granny taught me many lessons. From making apple pies to canning vegetables; she made sure I was well-equipped for the kitchen before I became too tall to stand on her chair. When I started cooking on my own, I would often call Granny for advice. She was always willing to help and her insight added that extra special touch to my recipes.

In the book of Titus, Paul is giving instructions to various groups of believers on how to live so that their lives will correspond with scripture. He speaks first to the elders and older men, then he transitions to the older and younger women.

                Similarly, teach the older women to live in a way that honors God. They must not slander others or be heavy drinkers. Instead, they should teach others what is good. These older women must train the younger women to love their husbands and their children, to live wisely and be pure, to work in their homes, to do good, and to be submissive to their husbands. Then they will not bring shame on the word of God.” – Titus 2:3-5(emphasis mine)

God intended for younger and older women to share life together. His plan included older women teaching younger women how to invest in their families and His kingdom.

Recently, I saw this command come to life when I took part in an inaugural women’s camp filled with 186 women, ages 18 to 95. The camp was the result of four courageous college girls with a vision for God’s girls coming together to worship, learn and fellowship with one another under one roof.

As I spent time at camp I was reminded of a beautiful story in God’s Word about a younger and older woman who went on a cross-country journey together.

We find their story in the book of Ruth.

When the story opens, we’re introduced to Naomi, the older woman, standing with her two daughter-in-laws in a foreign land called Moab. She has lost her husband and two sons. Destitute and stricken with grief, she decides to return to her homeland in Bethlehem. She takes her daughter-in-laws with her. Not long into the journey she looks at both girls and encourages them to return to their own homeland. Certainly, Naomi loved the girls and thought returning to their own land instead of hers would afford them more happiness and better provisions.

One of the daughters, Orpah, made the decision to return home. Ruth, however, chose to stay with Naomi. Her decision was life-changing. By choosing to follow Naomi, Ruth opened herself up to being trained by her mother-in-law, which led to her marrying Boaz, her kinsman-redeemer. Ultimately, by the end of Ruth’s story she becomes part of the lineage of Jesus Christ.

One of the blessings I received from camp was the time I had to spend with women who have gone before me as a wife, momma and teacher. These women bear incredible value to me. In many ways, they’ve walked in my shoes. They’ve experienced heartache, tragedy and real life struggles; yet God’s grace shines beautifully through their lives. As I sat with each one, we shared our life stories and I gleaned valuable wisdom and encouragement. No doubt, God ordained conversations with these women that I will carry with me for the rest of my days.

As the camp came to an end, God began speaking to me about intentionally investing in someone younger than me. I confess, I’ve let the ball down in this area, but the reality is there are women all around us who are hungry for friendships. Women, like you and I, in need of encouragement and advice. Women of all ages who often need nothing more than a listening ear.  And so, I ask you as God did me:

Friends, our choice to invest not only matters, but it’s also a step of obedience towards living out God’s plan for older and younger women.

Next week, we will look at five ways to invest in someone. If you want a reminder about next week’s post, I’d love for you to join our community at the top left side of this page. All you need to do is enter your email address and you’ll be on your way to receiving future Raising An Arrow posts in your inbox. (Mobile readers will need to scroll down the screen.) Have a blessed week and I’ll see you soon!

23 thoughts on “Your Investment Matters

  1. Great advice Leigh Ellen! It would be awesome for all of us to slow down and invest and lift up one another as women, mothers, daughters, writers, and girls of God! I have started in my small circle with my daughter and grand-daughters and hope to reach others with my blog, writing groups, and Compel members. Have a blessed week and look forward to learning the 5 ways to invest in another!

  2. Great post. I have two older women that have invested so much in me. My life has been changed because of them. I do want to be that person to a younger woman. What a wonderful legacy.

  3. This is such an important issue in the church. I am so thankful for the four college girls who took the initiative to facilitate this Titus 2 encounter for your church. I am praying about what that might look like for my own faith community. Visiting from Intentional Living.

    • Thank you, Kelly! They were phenomenal girls, indeed! Saying a prayer for you to receive God’s direction clearly for your community. Sweetest blessings to you! Thank you for visiting today.

  4. So great, Leigh. There is such value in sitting at the feet of older women of God who have walked the path before us. I love the idea of camping down alongside them. And Ruth – oh, its one of my favorite books of the bible. Grabs my heart every single time. Thank you for encouraging us to invest in each others lives – it’s a beautiful thing at every age. Blessings, friend.

  5. What a wonderful post Leigh! I was just talking about the story of Ruth with my mother this morning. What an awesome book in the bible! Taking the time to seek investing in others takes my eyes off myself and allows God to use me. Thank you for sharing this inspiring reminder of a Christ-like love. Blessed to visit your site today via Intentional Tuesday! May God continue to richly bless you and yours as you seek Him.

  6. Friend, what a powerful post! What an important topic for today’s society. It seems there’s been a break in the relationship between generations. The former generation views the young as wild and unruly and the younger generation view their elders as “not with it”, having nothing to offer. This shouldn’t be! We can’t give up on the next generation, nor can we discount the wisdom the former generation can give us. How beautiful life can be when we gather the two together! I’m so glad you had an amazing camp experience. I’m sure you made memories to last a lifetime. Have a wonderful week.

  7. Leigh,
    This is a beautiful post, with some of my favorite stories from the Bible. I’m continually disappointed that my mom chooses to be so far away from my and my young girls, both in distance and in conversation. I love her dearly! I miss her in more ways than one. There’s no mother-daughter phone calls every day, or outings with the two of us and my daughter’s like I dreamed there would be. Since I moved off to college, it’s been a “you’re on your own now” washing of the hands.

    Don’t feel bad for me. I love my mom. I’m blessed by her. She stayed at home to raise me. But, I know from the ache in my heart not to let the relationship with my own two twinkle-toed ballerina’s go for a second. I need them as much as they need me. God teaches me throught them, encourages me through them, loves me through them. I can’t imagine not wanting to be a part of their lives, no matter what ditches lie ahead. You’re post reminds me to keep that goal, and hold on to that dream …and to keep the relationships with daughters close to my heart for as long as God lends them to me.

    Happy Thursday, sweet Leigh!
    Megs

    • Meg, I am so sorry for the hurt you are walking with. I will be praying for God to bring total restoration and healing to your relationship. Thank you for stopping by today and sharing your heart, dear friend. You are always precious! Sweetest blessings to you!

  8. Leigh Ellen,

    Love the way your name is spelled, first of all. 🙂 My daughter’s name has the same spelling in it. We have much in common with regards to our sweet grandomothers. Mine has gone on to her forever home, but it was at her hands that I learned to cook and to pray and to love others well. I am so grateful for that heritage. ( Psalm 16:6)

    When I was a young momma, I asked God for Titus 2 women in my life. He answered with just a very few women at different times, but more than that, He answered with a call to be a Titus 2 women myself. This investing in people it takes time, it takes work but it is worth it. I am so glad He has met your heart in this and you are willing to share it.

    I had the privilege to follow you over at the Missional Women link up, but I also want to thank you for linking up over at #GraceMoments this week and last. I am behind in checking in on all the wonderful blogs since my schedule has exploded here, but thanks for being a part of Grace Moments with me.

    Blessings to you!!
    Dawn

  9. I belonged to a group at our church called Mom To Mom based on the passage in Titus 2. Women whose children were grown up taught and listened to us moms with younger children and babies. It was great.

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