Welcome friend! She Speaks is a conversation series that launches with each Ruah book.
For each She Speaks, I ask five women to answer the same three reflective questions about one meaningful theme.
It's an honor for me to share the heartfelt words of these women
as well as to release a new collection of art prints directly inspired by their wisdom.
If you'd like to download a PDF of all of the participants responses, you can do so here.shespeaksfinal.pdf
Grab a cup of coffee or tea, cozy up, and enjoy!
When you read Psalm 139, which word or verse(s) speaks most deeply to you? Why?
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14).
The first time I remember hearing this verse aloud, I felt like someone was reading it just to me. I was 23, and on a retreat after my first year of teaching. I was feeling pretty tired and very aware, of what felt like, all of my shortcomings. I was doodling in my notebook when the retreat leader repeated the words to echo, “YOU are fearfully and wonderfully made.” Wonderfully made. I wrote it down in loopy letters, like I did with words I wanted to remember. Wonder-full.
I knew God was speaking to me, wanting me to recognize the beauty that he created IN ME. Not because of me, or in spite of me. I was wonderfully made and all of the faults and lacking that I was feeling, these were, in fact, a gift, a part of who God made me to be.
What does it mean to be “enough”? How does feeling enough or not feeling enough play out in your everyday life? How does it affect your relationship with God?
In my head, I am rarely enough. My eyes see the forgotten thoughtfulness, the misplaced responsibility, the lacking enthusiasm. Slowly, I’ve been learning to listen to my heart where I think the Holy Spirit allows me to hear the best. My heart has a gentler voice, and it’s in prayer that I am able to have a fuller picture of my daily purpose. I’ve been practicing meditation, calming my breath to slow my thoughts, and it’s helped me to listen more in prayer. For so long, my prayer life has been a lot of me talking - in petition and thanksgiving and repentance. I guess my head talks a lot when I try to focus. My heart is quiet and attentive when I can be still so I’m trying to spend at least ten minutes (I know, it’s not a lot) a day in total stillness and quiet to listen to God’s voice. This simple act has helped me feel like enough.
If you could offer yourself wisdom on this subject what would it be? What does your heart need to hear today?
My prayer in the midst of a difficulty in a relationship is often, “Lord, help me to see this person with Your eyes. Help me to put my feelings to the side and see with understanding and compassion.” I’m sure you’ve heard it before, but I remind myself that I need to speak to myself like my best friend would - with tenderness and understanding and honesty. My resolution for my prayer life this year was to keep this thought in my heart all year long - God is always on my side. I forget a lot. If God is for us, who can be against us?
Thank you so much for sharing your heart with us and being a part of She Speaks, MJ!
We are so blessed by your wisdom and your beautiful spirit!