Just finished my youth small group. One of my favorite things is meeting with this group of 7-8 amazing young women. We just started John MacArthur's study, "12 Extraordinary Women". We began tonight with the question "How does your life feel ordinary and how can it be extraordinary?" Having Christ in our lives brings the extraordinary into every day. It was a little sad to hear how even at 16 or 17 years of age they already feel the monotony of life. I pray that each one of us can see Christ throughout our day and through striving to serve Him our lives are taken out of the muck and mire and into His presence. This is one of the amazing things about this adoption process. It is extraordinary. And to walk in His will opens our eyes and hearts to the wonder of His plan!
Using Eve as a jumping off point we talked about everything from submission to politics. One of the verses that opened up lots of discussion was I Timothy 2:9-14:
"And I want women to be modest in their appearance. They should wear decent and appropriate clothing and not draw attention to themselves by the way they fix their hair or by wearing gold or pearls or expensive clothes. For women who claim to be devoted to God should make themselves attractive by the good things they do. Women should listen and learn quietly and submissively. I do not let women teach men or have authority over them. Let them listen quietly. For God made Adam first, and afterward he made Eve. And it was the woman, not Adam, who was deceived by Satan, and sin was the result." That's NLT, the NIV says she should be silent.
We talked a lot about submission in marriage and in church. How this passage applies to leadership in other areas of our lives. How God has gifted each of us. How we are not inferior to men, but designed to be man's helper. MacArthur compares the relationship to that of the Trinity. Christ and God are equal, but Christ is submissive to God the Father. I am a pretty strong person. I can be assertive and when I am in social situations I have a tendency to be a leader. I do not hesitate to have an opinion and express it. But I praise the Lord that I do not struggle with submission in my marriage. I thank Him so much for the gift of a Godly husband that loves Him and loves me! It is not hard to submit in a relationship like that. I hope that I am able to be an example of how a woman can lovingly submit to her husband and how that does not resemble being a "doormat". I think that sometimes from the outside it sounds like that, especially to "the world".
It is so humbling to be in this position of leadership/mentoring. I feel inadequate and pray that I do not give misleading answers to their questions. Another thing that we discussed was the intimacy that Adam and Eve had with God in the garden. In another mentoring relationship I am in, we committed that this week we would spend quality time with God at least four of the seven days. For those of you that do not struggle with this, this may sound pathetic. But for me I have long been able to read lots of commentary and do lots of Bible studies but have never been able to have a sustained period of time where I consistently read God's word and prayed. Let this commitment be a new and unending season. The example of the women, and men, in the AoH group has been so eye opening for me. I thank you for your examples.