Thursday, June 16, 2016

Giddy Up, Eunice!

I'd never read a book authored by Sophie Hudson, even though I follow her on all the socials.  She seems like a fun, southern gal who loves the Lord, and who doesn't need more of that in your life?  A few months ago, she announced a new book being released in June and was recruiting for her launch team.  I was in the midst of my first two launch teams ever - Looking for Lovely, and The Gospel of Mark Bible study - and thought, "yeah, let's do this again!"  

Entering into this journey, I had no idea the topic of the book. With a name like "Giddy Up, Eunice" I assumed it was some sort of Toy Story spin-off where Woody and Buzz rescued Grandma Eunice from the jaws of a Lego crane.  But the sub-title, "Because women need each other" was intriguing and indicated it was more than a toy search and rescue thriller.  

Sophie takes three teams of women from Scripture - Mary and Elizabeth, Ruth and Naomi, and Lois and Eunice (there's Eunice!) - to show the biblical evidence of why women need women.  Each dynamic duo is used to show how God used each one for the other and how that applies to our lives today in our fast-paced, hashtag, social media world. #imexhausted  Now, if you pick up this book and expect an expositional retelling of each of their stories, it's not.  And, that's completely ok!  I believe there is a time for deep, Scriptural study and a time when we look at the biblical story, draw out the truths, and well, Giddy Up!  

As a woman who works at a high school with many young girls, Sophie adds her own spice of life experiences and how they apply to ministering to women.  The most endearing part of the book, to me though, are the stories of her Mom, her Mother-in-Law, Martha, and her Mamaw.  We visualize the legacy of her Mamaw as we tour her farm and Sophie retells her experiences.  Through her stories, we fall in love with those that have invested in Sophie's life and it causes the reader to begin to reflect on their own legacy and those that have played a part in the development.

My Mom passed away in September day after my 35th birthday. I really couldn't fathom losing one of my best friends so early in my life.  I remember sitting in her hospital room on my birthday thinking back on all that she taught me. How to trust God when you are married 18 years without conceiving to finally have your one and only child.  How to love a husband till death do you part.  How to stand for the truth even when it isn't popular.  How to live with a chronic illness and still go on.  How to walk gracefully through the valley of the shadow of death.  All that I was reflecting upon couldn't be absorbed in those moments.  But in the sixteen years following, I've reflected much.  She was and is my hero.

After my Mom passed, it hit me that I was blessed with a godly mother for 35 years, but oh so many more woman have not had that privilege.  In that moment, God ignited a passion in me to invest and disciple women.  The blessings I've experienced on that journey since my Mom's death are too numerous to recount in one blog post.  What I would give to have a few hours with my Mom to catch her up on the last sixteen years of my life and get her wise counsel on so many more things.  

During the time I began reading Eunice, my pastor's wife and I had met to discuss all things women's ministry and discussed our need to train others to invest in women.  That's what I call a God-incidence when His Plan pops up everywhere and all in a beautiful, syncopated symphony.  Giddy Up, Eunice, was a good kickstart to get me back on the horse (pun intended) and get serious about investing in women.  

The world is hurting.  In the last week we've had massacres, shootings and political ramblings and it all wears me down.  The world needs hope.  The world needs Jesus.  Women carry a huge burden of trying to fix everything, and in the midst of what is swirling around us today, we are frustrated and sometimes helpless we can do anything.  It's time to stop navel gazing and start looking outward to those women in our lives who need encouragement, who need a hug, and who need us to walk alongside them through life.  Giddy Up, Eunice will be just the book to light your fire and get you on the road to investing in other women.  

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