Encouraged by Daughter

1 Thessalonians 5:11–New International Version (NIV)
Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.

My daughter, Marlene, and I went to a speaking engagement where my younger daughter, Charlene, was the guest speaker.

As I listened to her, she was speaking my life. Every word that she spoke, I have felt a one point in my life. I had lost me because of the many hats that I worn at one time or another through the years. I was a daughter, a sister, a mother and a wife. These roles along with life hurts and pains have shaped me and in the process have buried me. I love each of the roles and would never in a million years give them up. However, as I navigate through each of these identities I wondered where the real Juanita is.
God is amazing! I went on our monthly visit to the prison with the Prison Ministry this past Saturday. Lula, another member, also went on this trip. We attend Sunday bible study together as well. We began to talk about our lesson and our lives. I mentioned to her that people used to call me stuck up when I was growing up and even now. I told her I didn’t do the things others did. She replied, “God called you at an early age.”

I have been pondering on my daughter’s speech every since I heard it. Now Lula gave me something more to ponder on. As I look back on the different stages of my life, I can see God’s hands. Although I have to admit, I didn’t always see it or recognize. There are many facets of Juanita, and one is in Christ. That’s who I am. I am a Christian mother who enjoys being creative. Over the next few months, it will be my prayer that every part of me is blossoms so I too can live the authentic life Christ died for. I can be a mother, sister, wife and daughter without compromising my true identify.

Each of my children leaves a different print on my heart. Both of my daughters are encouragers. However, Charlene, thank you for planting the seed for me well as other women so we too can be butterflies.