My admiration of this woman absolutely knows no end, and Lisa Bevere’s bold, authentic approach to embodying the words of Christ are a blazing torch for this generation. She beautifully weaves personal experience with profound biblical truth, giving us something relatable and practical all at once. It’s a grace to welcome Lisa to the farm’s front porch today…
There was unresolved conflict in the air, and I had no idea why.
Over the years, I’d reached out only to receive one-word responses. It was evident she was not going to engage with me.
In an attempt to figure it out, I’d asked all the questions I knew to ask. I’d spoken with all the people I knew to speak with. But no matter how hard I tried to shake it, I knew I had to make things right.
If there were to be any resolution, I’d have to take a more direct approach. I pushed aside all the excuses and I took steps to get in touch with her. After all, we would be ministering together at the same event soon, and things would just be too uncomfortable for both of us if this breach was not addressed and resolved.
It had been three years (yes, you read that correctly). That’s a long time to leave something unresolved and flapping in the wind.
In 2 Corinthians 13:11, Paul sums up the value God places on how we treat one another: Finally, brothers, rejoice. Aim for restoration, comfort one another, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.
Restoration is our aim, and as we live in peace with one another, God’s love and peace overshadow us.
I needed to restore this relationship if at all possible. But I wasn’t even sure if I had her correct number. I sent a text message and asked for a conversation. Her reply let me know that she would be able to talk the following day.
When the arranged time of our talk arrived, I dialed her number and held my breath. She answered the phone. I exhaled and took the lead.
I affirmed her, explaining that I had loved her the moment I had met her. I reminded her of the friendship we once shared. I went on to say how excited I had been the last time we were part of an event together.
The conversation shifted when I recalled how the last time we were together I had gone to her session to cheer her on, and how she had snubbed me by acknowledging each of the speakers from the stage but me . . . twice. I laid it all out on the table. After explaining how it all looked to me, I asked, “Have I done something to upset you?”
There was a long pause, a deep breath, then a wail.
I swallowed hard and thought, Dear Jesus, what have I done? Through muffled cries, she explained it wasn’t me and she was surprised that I of all people would be the one to call.
She shared that she had been repeatedly wounded by her mother and the women she saw as mother figures in her life. She had pulled away from them all, including me.
Walls were coming down. I listened . . . carefully. Her raw vulnerability made a way for both of us to have an honest and open conversation. We both acknowledged the hurt, the loss, and the disconnect.
We knew there existed a very real gap and spoke of ways we could bridge it; of ways we could love and live better as mentors and friends.
It wasn’t until later, after I had hung up, that I realized just how wrong I had been. I was the older one, which meant I should have been more mature. I never should have allowed three years to go by without addressing it. For a thousand days, I allowed something to go unsettled and unhealed in both of us because of an offense to my pride.
Yes, I had felt disrespected and devalued; who hasn’t felt that way? But my reaction was the fruit of wounded pride. Proverbs 13:10 tells us, “Only by pride cometh contention: but with the well advised is wisdom” (KJV). My wounded pride had left me in the dark. I was blind to it because I hadn’t dealt with it.
Lovely one, whenever we are under the sway of pride, it is as though blinders are put on us, and we cannot see anyone else’s pain because we are far too consumed by our own.
The crazy thing through all this was that I had seen myself as the victim and the other person as prideful, when actually, the roles were reversed. I was the prideful one!
When I saw her later at the event which we both were speaking at, my heart welled up with love for her as we embraced. I attended her session, and she was there for mine.
During worship, there was a moment when I felt compelled to place my hand on her back, but I hesitated. I looked over and noticed that another friend saw my hand hovering behind her. As if she knew the question lingering in my mind, she nodded her assent, as if to say, “Do it.”
As I laid my hand on her back, the young woman fell into my arms . . . weeping. She needed me. I needed her. We needed each other.
I don’t remember all that I prayed, except something deep and holy happened. Something that would not have ever happened if I had remained trapped in pride and offense.
Not long after we had reconciled, she wrote:
This Sicilian godmother prayed over me for healing as a daughter of God, areas I didn’t realize I still needed. Weeks later, God burdened me to stop shrinking back from the role of a spiritual mother. God is raising up spiritual mothers for a generation of girls coming behind us, but we can’t step into that role until we are healed in our identity as a daughter.
Find the women ahead of you in life who are interested in legacy, who are holding out a hand and lifting you up. Ones who aren’t guarding their influence but giving it away. They are the front runners, the ones who paved roads of leadership we now walk on freely. Let’s take those same kinds of risks for the generation coming up next.
Her words moved my momma heart deeply. Sadly, a generation of young women seem unaware that they are surrounded by mature women who’d love to open their lives and share with them what they learned the hard way.
On the other hand, older women are under the mistaken impression that no one wants what they have to offer so they withdraw, becoming distant or combative.
Lovely one, it doesn’t have to be this way.
The goal of confrontation should always be restoration rather than alienation.
Think about it: How can we ever give our best to God when we’ve been at our worst to others?
It’s time for godmothers and goddaughters to make things right; it’s time to model reconciliation.
This means there has never been a riper environment for us to be countercultural to the one we are in.
Whenever it is easier to be cruel than it is to be kind, we have that chance to model something very different.
Lisa Bevere has spent nearly three decades empowering women to find their identity and purpose. She is a cancer survivor and a New York Times bestselling author. Her books include Godmothers, Without Rival, Adamant, Lioness Arising, and Girls with Swords. Lisa and her husband, John, cofounded Messenger International to develop uncompromising followers of Christ who transform their world. To this end, Messenger has given away more than 40 million resources in over 100 languages.
Do you feel alone, unseen, overlooked? If you answered yes to any of these, perhaps you need a godmother. Someone to whisper a blessing and a word of courage over your life. Someone to help you close your gaps. A guide who sees your potential waiting to be recognized, your challenges in need of transformation, and your questions requiring honest answers.
In her most personal, powerful book yet, Godmothers: Why You Need One. How to Be One., New York Times bestselling author Lisa Bevere challenges us to embrace and pursue more in our relationships with one another. Godmothers offers catalytic insights to position women of all ages to make the intimate, authentic connections that help us realize our dreams and close the breaches in our lives.
Lisa’s candid, compassionate words weave together her personal stories, biblical principles, and the world of fairy tales to move you forward as a goddaughter, surrounded by strong relationships and confidence in your calling.
[ Our humble thanks to Baker for their partnership with today’s devotion ]