One of the things I admire most about women is our natural ability to nurture. When a friend is in need, we’re there to help. When someone is struggling we have an innate ability to encourage and build them up with our God-given intuition; Women are graceful, beautiful, loving creatures.
God lovingly created Eve to be Adam’s perfect helper. God presented Eve to Adam like a gift and in every way, she complimented his strengths and weaknesses. He was proud of what He had made for His son.
“ And the rib which the Lord God had taken from the man He made (fashioned, formed) into a woman, and He brought her and presented her to the man.”
-Genesis 2:22 (AMP)
If you read the entire passage carefully you’ll notice God didn’t create Eve so she could help Adam tend to the garden. God was looking for a companion. A friend. A partner.
Given our nature, what happens when our “Adam” abandons us or treats us badly? What happens to our gentle, empathetic nature?
Abandonment and mistreatment can come in plenty of ways but some of the ones that come to mind are: being emotionally unavailable, prioritizing work, pornography addiction, infidelity, always putting others needs before yours, controlling or manipulative behavior, drug or alcohol addiction, bullying… the list goes on.
No longer protected, in our vulnerability, we turn into protectors. Our desire to be confident for our “Adam” turns into a ferocity unlike no other.
They say we have the mind of Christ, I believe God gets fierce about His women not being protected. Just like our earthly Fathers, God wants to protect us. He gave us this inner warrior spirit, which is stronger than a man’s by the way (seriously, watch a woman in divorce court as she fights for her children) because it protects us.
I speak from experience because I know how it feels to be abandoned and mistreated; I’m married to an addict. Through my experience with my husband, my inner fighter came out. It’s not the first time I’ve seen her but she’s much stronger than she was the last time she came out swinging her protective fists of fury!
Being married to an addict has been more difficult than I can properly put into words but because of it, I’ve learned how to be both gentle and strong at the same time. This is the true character of God and how He created His daughters to be. He is both merciful and just. Patient but firm. Loving and powerful. And you, sister, have that inside of you too.
We’re taught to believe we were only created to be companions. To perfectly to compliment our husbands (or future husbands) weaknesses. While this is partially true, it’s only a piece of our nature. We were also created in the image of God for another purpose entirely. When we’re abandoned by our, “Adam” we learn that God is the one we were really created for.
God first. Adam second.
“Put not your trust in princes, in a son of man, in whom there is no salvation.”
-Psalm 146:3 (KJV)
No one will ever love us like God will. He’s the true love of our life. When we love God and make Him the center of our purpose He will give us the “Adam” we need.
For me, I’m still hoping he’ll give me my husband back. The handsome man I fell in love with was my perfect companion and I was his perfect helper. God told me to stand by my husband through a hard season in his life. Whatever happens next, my identity is not found in the success or failures of my husband, it’s found in who God made me to be.
While my husband is still lost, I am found.
I’m thankful God gave me a gentle, nurturing nature. It’s helped me to support my “Adam” in ways I wouldn’t of otherwise. I’m also glad he gave me this spirit of fierceness because that fighting spirit has protected me from significant harm. Our natural tendency to nurture can work hand in hand with our strength.
If you’re a woman, going through anything tough, I encourage you to remember your strength is gentle but by no means is it weak. Many may have been made physically strong but your inner spirit is a powerful force to be reckoned with. You have the Spirit of God inside of you, you’re His daughter. Do you see how incredible you are? What wonderful, amazing gifts He’s given you? You were created in His likeness. He was proud of you when He made you.
So proud, he presented you as a gift.
Leah Grey moved to New York City full of hopeful aspirations until her husband went into long-term treatment for addiction. Unable to afford to stay, she picked up her childhood dreams and moved back to her rural, Canadian beach town with her two young children. From rooftop city skyline views to her parent’s basement, in the darkest time of her life, she created Grey Ministries to support, encourage and empower women with loved ones who struggle with addiction. With a practical faith-based approach she challenges popular beliefs about addiction while teaching women in crisis how to find God’s peace within the storms of life. In March 2016, she launched her website, leahgrey.com and popular peer support community, “Live, Love, Hope” http://facebook.com/groups/livelovehope.
Clean, crisp stars brighter than a thousand torches shone their brilliance triumphantly. Their presence set aflame the inky night that had fallen across the eastern sky.
As usual, the heavenly bodies brought the evening to life. Smells and sounds of crunching hay and dirt filled the noses of any travelling on the roads, which at that time of evening was very few.
Anyone walking the dusty roads would notice the stillness but vibrancy that defined the evening. If the innkeeper had looked up at the sky that night he would have noticed how the skies appeared to be alive, lit by the joy of a Heavenly Father.
“…lit by the joy of a Heavenly Father.”
If one were to look to the right of the road they would surely see the small cave carved roughly into a grassy hill. The entrance to this cave was wide and dark. The dull but warm flicker of one candle bounced off the walls of the wooden stalls and splashes of hay that lay across the hard floor.
There were two people within the cave, a young woman and a man. In the mans’ large hand lay a tiny baby who was Savior of the world but not known to the world. A slight breeze blew in through the cave’s opening and touched the tiny babies’ fresh, quivering skin. The child’s small, dark eyes squinted as he began to squirm against Yosef.
Dissatisfied with his lack of comfort the child let out a strong wailing sound. The mans’ eyes widened and remained on the babe while reaching for the bundle of swaddling cloth that lay in the hay beside his wife. The man named Yosef picked the couple pieces of hay that have stuck to the cloth before passing the sheet to his wife. She caught his hand and stared into her husbands’ eyes. They were filled with alarm. It was a panic Miriam had noticed since the beginning of their long journey. The panic had been present when her birthing pains became more frequent and now because he could not interpret the needs of their newborn the panic reappeared.
“It’s going to be okay Yossef. We have made it here, where we needed to be. You have done well.” The man smiled gently at his wife then quickly looked down at the newborn.
“As have you Miriam.” Yossef’s large thumb caressed his sons’ tender face. Something so wonderful had come from his wife’s ability to trust Elohim.
“Something so wonderful had come from his wife’s ability to trust Elohim.”
As Yosef continued to stare at the baby any sign of worry melted from his expression. A large smile began to cover his lips. This child was the Most High Creator. That night a great honour had come to his household. The reality of who this child was moved something deep within his being. After a few moments of dwelling on the baby’s’ identity the carpenter felt compelled to speak.
“Though the road has been difficult we thank you for this high calling Elohim. We thank you. We thank you greatly.”
For some reason I have been left me with the idea that family and holidays were meant to emanate perfection. Over the years of maturing in my relationship with God and others I have seen that ain’t happening anytime soon. There are no perfect families because there are no perfect people! Revelation!
Unfortunately the actions of our imperfect family can cause wounds deep within us, especially during the holiday season. In light of this it is good to be reminded of the reality of that night in Bethlehem. Things were not perfect. By no means were they pristine. Yossef and Miriam (Joseph and Mary) would have suffered hardship not only due to the circumstances regarding Yehoshua’s conception but also as they travelled over very difficult terrain.
The two of them would have been tired, hungry and most likely in pain as they made their way to Bethlehem that night but they knew they had a mission. Do we ever feel this way when we spend time with people who exhaust us or deal with familial politics?
I write this as a reminder to remember what the mission is. That is to bring Jesus’s love and the reality of His life into the situation, no matter how difficult or how much of a donkey someone is.
This is my mission; I pray for strength within you to make it yours as well.