Isaiah 63:9, “In all their affliction He was afflicted, and the angel of His presence saved them: in His love and in His pity He redeemed them; and He bare them, and carried them all the days of old.”
The words of Serene’s song, El Shaddai, have been on my mind the last few weeks…
As I hold this baby in my arms
I’m like a picture of You,
To nurture with Your love
Is what you made me to do.
These words, “To nurture with your love is what you made me to do” should ring in the ears and hearts of all women. This is our highest destiny. This is what we were created and destined to do. This is the anointing God wants us to live in. It is an expression of who God is. Read these verses: Exodus 19:14; Deuteronomy 1:31; 32:10-12; Isaiah 46:3-4, Acts 13:18.
“To nurture.” What beautiful words! The world is crying out for nurture. Children are crying to be nurtured. There are millions of adults across the world who need nurturing. They did not receive nurture when they were young and their lives now reveal the emptiness.
This "nurture anointing" is not only relegated to mothers with children. It is God’s intention for all women. If we were to ask who was the greatest mother of this last century, there would be a unanimous reply. Mother Theresa. Was she married? No. Did she bare her own children? No. But she was a great nurturer. She fed the poor. She loved the unlovely. She poured out her life to the needy. She sacrificed her own goals to bless others. Dear fellow wives and mothers, can we rise up into this anointing?
The world waits to feel the anointing of God’s nurturing heart. And it starts with us. It starts in our homes. It starts with pouring out our lives to nurture our own children and then flowing over to meet the needs of the needy around us.
Nurturing is not something that we do at certain times of the day. Nurturing is a lifestyle. It should constantly flow from us - to all we speak to and all we meet. Nurturing our children is a full-time job. We don’t clock in our time and clock out again at a certain hour. Instead, we lay down our lives to pour out God’s nurturing love.
The dictionary tells us that “nurture’ means…
1. that which nourishes, food, diet
2. that which promotes growth
3. education, training and instruction
Nurturing touches the whole person – body, soul and spirit.
We are to nurture our children’s physical bodies with life-giving food. Remember that life-giving food is not refined, packaged, sugar-filled foodless food. It is not a diet from the Fast Food chains. It is enzyme-packed food that will nourish healthy bodies for the future.
What about the soul? Preparing food takes time, but it takes more effort to nurture the soul and the spirit. It is a full-time job. We nurture the soul by…
Encouragement is such a powerful tool. It makes the soul fat and flourishing. Perhaps you were not encouraged as a child. You may still feel the loss of that in your life today. But don’t deprive your children. Ask God, who is the God of consolation and encouragement, to pour His encouragement into you so you can encourage your children. It will feed their souls.
2. Training and instruction, which includes disciplinary correction.
This is the meaning of the word that is used in Ephesians 6:4 where it admonishes fathers, “Do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.” We train and discipline our children because we love them and want them to be sharpened and polished ready for the Master’s use. A child that is left to his own devices is not a nurtured child. It is sad to see children who are out of control and who have no boundaries. They may get what they want by whining and persistence but they grow up empty and dry in their souls.
In Jeremiah 31 God proclaims all the wonderful promises to His people Israel when they return to their land. One of them is in verse 12, “their soul shall be as a watered garden.” Wouldn’t it be wonderful if all our children could testify to this blessing because of our faithful nurturing and watching over their souls?
And of course we nurture the spirit by feeding and nourishing our children in the ways and words of the Lord. I am sure that your longing is the same as mine that they will be “nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine.” (1 Timothy 4:6).
May the anointing of God’s nurturing heart be poured upon you today – for your own precious children and for the hurting and the needy around you.
“Father, I pray that you will release your nurturing heart upon me, in me, and through me. I long to live in this anointing. Nurture me, Lord, as I wait on you, so I can nurture my family. Lord, let this become my life every moment of the day – to be a nurturer. And Lord, I pray that you will raise up all your women across the land to be nurturers. Let your nurturing anointing be poured out to this hurting world. Amen.”
Deep within your heart You hold the source
For everything that’s tender,
Soft and kind.
To caress the world the world with warm affection
You thought of a mother -
From Serene’s song, El Shaddai.