“She has fire in her soul & grace in her heart.”
Happy International Women’s Day! I wanted to take the opportunity to use today to celebrate the incredible, fierce women in my life… Especially now that I’m raising a little woman of my own. We women are such miracles. It’s amazing what we can do… Grow a child inside of us, nurture and love our families, work to provide, create a warm, loving home and so, so much more.
When I think of strong women, my mind immediately goes to my Mawmaw. She was the matriarch of our family and was widowed at a fairly young age. She embodied characteristics that I can only hope to one day also display. Her strength was surpassed only by the love that she had for her family. And if you weren’t family? That didn’t matter, because she welcomed you into her life with a warm hug and some “sugar.” My mom has followed in her footsteps and also treats everyone with that same compassion. I hope to be just like them both.
I know most people are going to use this day to talk about women in our modern world… But the women who have left lasting impressions on me are from a different time and a totally different world than what we live in now. I’d like to use this day to commemorate women that I look up to. These are the women that I have learned life lessons from and hope to teach MacKenlee about while we help to shape and mold her little personality as she grows.
3 Women Who Inspire Me:
- Ruth from the Bible: Ruth left her home and everything she knew to begin a life with her husband in a foreign land. Think about that for a second… There were no phones, she didn’t even have a mailman. She left and most likely didn’t know if she’d ever see her family again. Then the cruelest scenario became her reality; her husband died. Not only did he die, but so did his father and brother. She had a choice: go home like her sister-in-law or stay to live and care for her mother-in-law. Not many would choose the path she did, but one of my favorite verses came from this story: “For where you go I will go, and where you lodge I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God.” She trusted in God’s calling on her life instead of heading back to the home and people she knew best. Can you imagine being that selfless, putting someone else’s needs before your own?
- Corrie ten Boom author of “The Hiding Place”: I attended private Christian schools from 1st grade until graduation. In middle school, we had a lot of required reading that secular schools wouldn’t even have in their libraries. At the time, I hated it. In hind sight, I’m thankful. If not for these assignments, I wouldn’t have read “The Hiding Place” at such a young age. This book began my interest in the WW11 era and, more specifically, The Holocaust. This book details the ten Boom’s quest in hiding and protecting Jews from the Nazis. Corrie and her sister were sent to concentration camps and used a hidden Bible to teach others about the Christian faith. This story is raw, heartbreaking and makes you thankful that we live in a country where our religion doesn’t have to be hidden. Her faith in God through the trials she endured amazes me.
- The Proverbs 31 Woman: I know she wasn’t actually a person, at least we have no proof that she was… But I believe this scripture was written based off the characteristics that the writer saw embodied in multiple women and that’s what I find so beautiful. The woman described is perfect (in many people’s opinions) and we all know perfection isn’t a reality or even attainable. But we can strive to do our best. We can try every day to live our dreams, the dreams God has placed on our hearts. I pray to have a servant’s heart, just like the Proverbs 31 woman. To put my husband before myself. To be my best self every day. Many will argue that these verses and lifestyle are outdated; but the principles stand true to this day in my opinion.
My role models are all Christian based, but regardless of your faith, there’s something you can learn from each of them. Our current world celebrates those who are most outspoken, most bold and most shocking. A lot of times, these individuals receiving attention aren’t getting it for being positive or even doing good, and yet society builds them up to celebrity status (Jersey Shore anyone?) I want to raise my daughter hearing stories of women who I hope to me more like myself, which is what inspired me to share these women with you.
Please leave a comment below with the woman who you are most inspired by in your life.
Photography by Kara Coleen.