(This one's pretty much for the girls...but I'm sure the guys could take something from it too)
I'm reading an amazing book right now.
It's by a woman who I admire & respect. And I've never met her.
Her name is Lisa Bevere. Yes, people. She is a Christian writer & speaker. A pastor. But most of a all, she's a daughter, woman & mother. And she gets this thing called 'nurture'. It's really got me thinking so I wanted to share some thoughts on it with you.
As a daughter, I understand what it is to be nurtured. My own parents have nurtured me into the person I am today. That takes in the good and the not so good... but I think I turned out ok? And I love and respect my parents for moulding me into the nurturer that I have become. I also have a wonderful friend who has nurtured my spiritual heart who I am blessed to have in my life. Although I'm not her biological daughter, and she has no children herself...that nurturing and mothering spirit that is so built in to the feminine heart has had such a profound impact on my life. As have many other women that have crossed my path.
As a mother, I understand nurturing. It's always something I think I've done. Now I'm not claiming to be mother Theresa...there's people in my life I know I've hurt... usually unintentionally or unwittingly. So I know I haven't always nurtured, even if I've tried my best. I'm sure you can relate. But the day I became a mother, something was not only born of me, but in me. I wanted to love & to help people grow...particularly my precious babies.
As a woman, I recognise that my words and my actions hold incredible power. The words I chose can have the power to build someone up, encourage their growth even. Or they could, in the same breath, bring someone down into the depths. It's all about the delivery. Is what I say from a place of nurture & love? Or is it from a place of self & ego? This is something with which I struggle with from time to time. Good intentions can sometimes be misread. Although my nurturing spirit comes from within, sometimes it takes a conscious decision...and I won't always be successful at it.
There is a world out there that is desperately seeking to be nurtured.
Take a look at a lot of the problems people face... that society faces. Do you think that it's possibly that a lot of 'issues' come from people not being nurtured? I do. I don't deny there's a whole bunch of contributing factors, but it's that basic human need to be loved & nurtured that can make or break the foundations of a persons life.
I love this quote from Lisa:
'Are we far too busy surviving to make the time to assure that the tender lives surrounding us thrive?'
It doesn't take much to nurture someone. It could be as simple as a meal for the freezer when someone's struggling or exhausted. I know this has been HUGE for me, especially in this season of small children. It could be a phone call to ask R U OK? ( www.ruokday.com.au ) It could be dropping by to hold the baby or take him/her for a walk in the pram so mum can have a shower and feel human again. It could be chosing to speak from a place of love, instead of a place of fear, anger or hurt.
You don't have to be a mother to know how to nurture. Heck, you don't even need to be a woman! Think about someone who has nurtured you. Someone who has shown you kindness and love, perhaps when you least deserved it, or maybe when you needed it most. Then go and replicate that. Imagine, if everyone showed 'nurture' to another human being. Imagine the difference it could make. BIG things could change in this often crazy world.
It doesn't take much to nurture...and sometimes, it really is just a simple choice. Start small.