Today’s American woman inherited the Spirit of the women who, over 300 years ago, travelled across the ocean to a new world. Not knowing what they would have to endure, they courageously left their homes with a determined spirit and a sense of adventure. Along with their husbands or parents they sailed for month to creat a brand new nation.
That spirit is not only in our past but is alive and well in all of us today. There are some we know and others we will never know, but that spirit is there nurturing tomorrow’s leaders and ensuring a future for our children and grandchildren.
As you look around you will find many women who have lived their life courageously, compassionately, and full of vitality.
Who in your life has been your role model? Who has encouraged you? Who has given you hope and a desire to fulfill your dreams? If you are like me, there are many women that have come and gone out of your life, who have influenced who we are and inspired in us what we can accomplish.
As most of you k now my mother was the most influential person in my life. She overcame her obstacles of the great depression and from the destruction of war, she survived to rebuild her life and to raise her daughters in a safe home that she filled with her love. Her strength and courage along with her determination to never give up is her inheritance to me, my sister and my daughter.
There are the women who lived through their own trials to not only come through them stronger but with an inner joy that would not keep them down for long. They showed me what it takes to get things done and helped to draw out my inner strength. Their faith in God never wavered as they relied on His strength as they passed on that faith to me.
There are also the women I have met who serve God on the mission field, giving up the comforts of home to take care of those in need in far-off places, they have taught me about serving others, compassion and a sense of adventure.
My Spiritual Director has introduced me to the beauty of God in nature and in music and to embrace my faith in all circumstances. She has opened up for me the path to spiritual freedom, the freedom to be who God created me to be.
These women will never be famous but they have all left a legacy for us today, a legacy of courage, of adventure, of common sense and faith. It is our responsibility to pass on what we have learned from the women in our lives to the next generation of women.
I can only hope that I am passing on to my daughter not only the legacy from the women in my life but of my own legacy to her – the legacy of laughter and tears. In knowing that it is alright to laugh even when things get difficult and it is alright to cry when you are overwhelmed with life’s struggles. But the legacy I want most for her is the freedom to be who God created her to be.
What is your legacy to the young women in your life?