When You’re Given a Treasure For Your Journey

I held the book in my hands. Disciplines of a Godly Woman. I’ve had this book for years. I’ve read it through, and ever since, it sat on my shelf because it was too good to get rid of.

I page through and realized that I’ve had a tool in my hands which would have answered many questions for me a long time ago. And in a sense, because I’ve already read it, it did. However, I didn’t realize at the time the wealth of information available to me. I didn’t understand the value of what I had before me.

There were seasons, especially as a young Christian, where I sought answers, direction, guidance, and counsel from those I thought were living the “Christian” life. However, rather than walking away with an arsenal of tools for my young journey, I’d leave feeling frustrated with the inconsistency between what I saw before me and what I read in Scripture. As a young woman in my 20’s, I was in a ripe stage for being impressed upon, moulded, and trained. Sadly, what I picked up along the way was a love of self, hypocrisy, a judgmental spirit, self-righteousness, suspicion of people’s motives, and a striving for “greatness” which left me empty and unsettled inside.

Oh, how I loved God and wanted to serve Him. How passionate I was for Him. How much potential there was for growth and godliness. And yet, discipleship and training of character and godliness was lacking around me. Actions of those in authority contradicted the very words they spoke. For a young, impressionable woman, this became toxic.

It wasn’t until my house fire in 2010, when God so beautifully broke through all the misconceived notions I had, and taught me what it looks like to be loved, accepted, and approved in the Beloved. And that changed me. Indefinitely.

I began to see what God’s word said and how it applied to my life. I began to discern the inconsistencies around me (and in my own life) and I learned to walk in what God was asking of me. I stopped the pursuit of “greatness” and instead went into a pursuit of the Great One, Jesus Christ. I stopped looking at others and what they were doing and how they were living and I began to look at the land God’s given me. I began to cultivate, weed out, and do the hard work of disciplining self. I stopped believing that purpose and greatness was about how God used me “out there” and I learned the purpose and value of my place in my home, my place as a wife, my place as a mother, and most importantly, my place as a daughter of the king. Why is that important? Because out of this place, everything else flows.

God began to change the desires of my heart and I’ve never looked back. Years later, I sit holding this book in my hands again, I page through it and I see a Bible Reading Plan.

I see a list of beautiful hymns that have been sung throughout church history tying us with men and women of faith throughout centuries. I see suggestions for songs that record the truth of the gospel into our hearts strengthening us and uniting us with the Body of Christ–past, present, and future.

I see recommendations for books from a woman in her 60s (at the time of this writing) who has lived out the faith, grown in her walk with God, and now like a Titus 2 woman she laid out the feast for us. I find resources that tell me, Hey, you’re not done here. There’s a lifetime of growth, a lifetime of character training and building. Here, be encouraged and enlarge your thinking. Get outside of yourself as you learn that it’s not about you and your greatness, but about Christ and the beautiful story He’s been weaving since the beginning of time. Come, let me put in your hand resources of others who’ve walked the straight and narrow. Learn from them how they struggled, how they fought the good fight, how they persevered.

I get to this page and I see some books that have been transformative for me in the past 6 years (especially in the path of home education for my children), For the Children’s Sake by Susan Schaeffer and Honey for a Child’s Heart by Gladys Hunt. And I realize that long before I ever read those books, God had provided the resource for me. I could have read them long ago. I could have wasted less time.

Friends, it’s taken me years to learn what I have learned. Simple things. Things that do not take years to understand and learn. When I began {In Pursuit}, the blog, years ago, it began out of a heart to take what I’ve learned and share it with others that they might be saved the time and trouble I’ve had to endure.

There are a number of voices my very age telling me how to live life in order to be successful. And you know? It looks shiny and polished on the outside. However, I don’t want to follow designs by women who haven’t gotten to the end of that journey. For they promise what they do not know. I want to sit before God’s ageless and timeless word. I want to hear how He says I should live. And I want to sit and listen to the heart of women who have actually fought the good fight and endured, women who’ve cultivated the hard soil of their hearts and therefore speak from a place of humility and truth.

I’m retaking the journey through this book. This time with a much greater understanding of the treasure of wisdom God’s placed in my hands. And I’m inviting you on that journey. It’s not an easy, feel good, “mom-you’re-not-alone”, “it’s-ok-to-compromise-and-be-happy” kind of book. Rather, we’ll be challenged. We might disagree. We might have to go back and sit with our bad habits and misconceptions.

Either way, we will be growing and learning. You’ll walk away with a discipleship plan in your hands. You can learn. You can read through the Bible in an easy and effective way. You can start reading books that will impact, stretch, and teach you. You can be a disciplined woman who understands that the training of our souls requires a lifetime commitment. It requires hard work and endurance. It requires walking in step with the Holy Spirit and allowing Him to be the great Teacher He is.

So, what do you say? Want to join me? {Book Club Thursdays} begins June 1, 2017 (more details to follow).

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© 2016 Darlene Collazo | {In Pursuit} My Quest

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