There are great stories about nurturing and friendship throughout the Bible. My favorite is the relationship between Mary and Elizabeth. Barely a woman, Mary was told by the angel Gabriel that she would bear a child. Not just any child, but God’s child. This child would be called Son of the Most High and his kingdom will never end.
In faith, she accepted this journey that God had chosen for her, but God knew that she would need someone to help her prepare for this role and directed Mary to her cousin, Elizabeth. Mary traveled to Judea to visit Elizabeth and stayed for three months. I like to think that during that time, Elizabeth encouraged and supported Mary by teaching and preparing her to be a wife and mother.
There are also great stories of friendship in our lives today. For instance, there is a wonderful woman in my church who is a great example of leading a Christian life. For years, she took care of her aging mother who had Alzheimer’s disease. Because of her experiences, I am able to turn to her for advice and information on how to take care of my own mother who has the same disease.
Over the past year, she has taught me patience and how to cherish every moment I have with my mother. I would be lost without her guidance.
Friends, we need each other. Paul writes in Titus 2:3-5 (NIV)
Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.
Paul instructs the older women on how to live a holy life, but he leaves out directions for younger women. He gave that responsibility to the older women.
Who are these older women? Actually, we are all older women to those that are younger than us and we have been given a priceless responsibility — to take women less experienced in life and guide and teach them how to live a Christian life.
How do we do this? God has already given us what we need to teach through our life experiences. We not only instruct but we show. We let them see how we live our lives and are committed to God’s Word.