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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Any Woman

I love it when God blows me away with the reality of His love, or with the certainty of forgiveness, or with glimpses of eternity. I love it when, because of His infinite patience, sometimes I finally "get it" that He is absolutely in control and will never leave me nor forsake me. I love those high and lofty moments that make me think, "This is what heaven will be like!"

Um . . . This won't be that kind of message. Today, God has really dropped a different kind of message into my heart. Definitely not warm and fuzzy, but girls, sometimes we've gotta hear it. (Tell me I'm not the only one.)

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Any woman can hold a grudge. Any . . . woman. Any woman can be an angry shrew. Any woman can hold another in distain and go through the motions of everyday life, bitter on the inside, "dutiful" on the outside. Any woman can build a wall around herself so as not become vulnerable . . . again. Any woman can concentrate on how 'right' she (actually) is, along with how 'taken for granted' she is, day after day. Any woman can mask discontent with busyness and a fake smile. Any woman can wear her disappointments like sparkling, shiny jewelry around her neck. Any woman can carry a mental, "How I've been wronged" list as ammunition against those who would suggest forgiveness. Any woman can quote scripture that she does not live. Any woman at all. Any woman.

It takes no special training. In fact, our flesh is well equipped with everything necessary to pull off the entire paragraph
above without breaking a sweat. We come fully loaded with an aptitude toward jealousy, anger, bitterness, self-righteousness, self pity, and an everlovin' bucket full of "All of the reasons I have a right to pout."


To be honest, there have been way too many times that I have deserved the title "Queen of Mean" - skillfully displaying all of the above traits with abandon. My fearful heart was the cause of my behavior. But a bruised and battered heart will act like that, too. So will a confused heart. And, over time, habits of behavior form, to protect those damaged hearts, and we become . . . any woman.



But you know, don't you, that we aren't called to be 'any woman' - we are called to be God's woman. God's woman refuses to accept the enemy's description of her situation. She flows in forgiveness, because unforgiveness would place a barrier between her and her God. She doesn't operate in anger, because she recognizes that THAT is a trait of her enemy. She isn't wiped out by life's disappointments because she trusts God to be in control. She is reasonably comfortable with her limitations because she knows that God is aware of them too. God's woman does not hold a grudge - she knows that THAT will never reflect her Savior's image. She is intimately connected to THE Source - Who directs her life. God's woman has learned that bitterness doesn't produce beauty, but vulnerability, in Christ, does.

'Any woman' will continually move farther and farther from her divine destiny.

God's woman will rock her world simply by choosing to reflect the Savior rather than her flesh.

"Let not your beauty be [merely] external adorning, but let it be the inward adorning and beauty of the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible and unfading charm of a gentle and peaceful spirit, which [is not anxious or wrought up, but] is very precious in the sight of God" (1 Peter 3:3-4 Amp)


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A couple of months ago, I attended a women's conference where Holly Wagner spoke. She made a statement that sticks with me still. She was speaking about the beginning of our Christian walk when the road is wide and full of people. Then, it becomes narrow, and less populated as 'runners' drop out of the race. She said:

"As the road narrows, the crowd thins out. (Not as many chicks still walkin' the walk.) And though there aren't as many women, the
caliber of woman you meet there, on the narrow road, will take your breath away!" (Holly Wagner - paraphrase)

Does our walk take anyone's breath away, Lord? Are we willing to give up our "rights" at the foot of the cross, and allow you to break us, mold us, into Your image? Have we allowed Christ to fill us, so that we finish this race as God's woman? Or are we full of . . . us? Of all the things we've ever wanted to be, Lord - "Any woman" - is not one of them.

Have Your way, Lord. . . Have Your way.




Visit Darnelle at her personal blog:
All Things Work Together

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16 Comments:

Blogger Denise said...

Excellant devotion, bless you.

January 23, 2008 at 4:19 AM  
Blogger lori said...

hold a grudge...me NEVER...yeah, right...
YES, we NEED to hear it and be reminded of just what kind of WOMAN we are and want to be!

Holly was right, the caliber of women that you meet on the narrow road HAS taken my breath away...
like say, RIGHT HERE today!!

Darnelle, I want to take someone's breath away with my walk....
WHAT A MESSAGE!!
He has His Way...
hugs,
lori

January 23, 2008 at 6:06 AM  
Blogger Praise and Coffee said...

Darnelle,
What a heart stirring question, does my walk take anyone's breath away. Wow.

I also loved what you said:

God's woman will rock her world simply by choosing to reflect the Savior rather than her flesh.

Amen, awesome thoughts! Very powerful, thank you.

In Him,
Sue

January 23, 2008 at 7:21 AM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

Darnelle, have you been in my house today? I am any woman today, and I have been ashamed all day. Thank you for the stirring words. It's not about me, and I don't want to be this person anymore! You wrote exactly what I needed. Now I pray that I can make the changes to stop being any woman.

January 23, 2008 at 8:02 AM  
Blogger Mocha with Linda said...

I love-hate this devotion! :-)
Love it because it's so good and true.
Hate it because it's convicting.

I don't want to be any woman. Want to be a woman reflecting God.

Thanks.

January 23, 2008 at 8:26 AM  
Blogger Linda said...

Darnelle, you rocked Internet Cafe again. Great, great post.

January 23, 2008 at 8:52 AM  
Blogger The Preacher's Wife said...

Excellent Darnelle...

Ouchy, but excellent.

It is so easy to default to the flesh. It takes mad dog intentionalism to be the one who's still hanging on at the end of that narrow path. We pace ourselves according to those who are around us. I consider myself blessed to have the writers AND readers here at CWO to challenge my walk.

Love to all of you!

Lisa

January 23, 2008 at 9:29 AM  
Blogger Joyce said...

I was one of those women. I went throught a deep valley and I praise God for the events that followed. Through a long pray God forgave me and brought me up to the montain for sunshine and joy. I work at being the women on the narrow path even though I work at it daily.

January 23, 2008 at 10:01 AM  
Blogger Kelly said...

I love the questions you challenged us with today! They really hit us in some uncomfortable places. Thank you for speaking what God layed on your heart. I so desire to be Go'd woman, not just any woman.

January 23, 2008 at 10:16 AM  
Blogger windycindy said...

Hello Darnelle! Thanks for making me think about myself and your inspirational writing! You are appreciate.....Cindi :)
jchoppes[at]hotmail[dot]com

January 23, 2008 at 11:20 AM  
Blogger Mary Lou said...

thank you for this devotion. God keeps coming at me....thru different means. How I want to be a woman that reflects Him and not be just any woman. This will take time with Him and in His Word and lots of prayer...What a great devotion and thanks for making us think...

January 23, 2008 at 11:28 AM  
Blogger Cory said...

Thank you for the wonderful message. I am working on being one of God's women. I want to be a woman that takes your breath away. Take care, Cory

January 23, 2008 at 11:51 AM  
Blogger Heart of Wisdom said...

Great post. All of us harbor some measure of regret over past and none of us are worthy of God's love and grace. It takes complete surrender minute by minute not to walk in our default flesh.

I've added the "Have You Had Your Devotion?" to my side bar at http://heartofwisdom.com/blog

Blessings,

Robin

January 23, 2008 at 12:18 PM  
Blogger Cheryl said...

This is a very good post. I want my walk to "take their breath away". I am struggling to be that "woman" God wants me to be. Reading your post has been a big help for me. Thanks for such a inspiring post. God Bless!

January 23, 2008 at 9:24 PM  
Blogger Tammy said...

Great word! What an amazing quote by Holly. I really like that! I love your questions, "Does my walk take anyone's breath away?" Thought provoking!

January 24, 2008 at 10:50 PM  
Blogger Debra said...

Darnelle,

Beautifully said .. My prayer is that I can beautifully walk it!

God bless you!

August 16, 2008 at 11:00 AM  

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