“A woman is like a tea bag – you can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.” -Eleanor Roosevelt
I would consider myself a strong woman. I have brewed in some pretty hot water in my meagre thirty-seven years and I’m all the stronger for it. Stronger mentally and stronger spiritually. I have come to realise that there’s nothing like a little hot water to boost one’s faith.
Thinking about all the instances in my life that I would consider to be hot water, I am reminded of a verse from Exodus 15:2 – “The Lord is my strength and my song; he has given me victory. This is my God, and I will praise him.” I never went through any of it alone. I always had hope and trust. And, I have always come out victorious. So victorious in fact that an aunt of mine dubbed me Jesus’ Darling in my teens and that has stuck with me since.
I personally know countless women who can be compared to strong cups of tea. They have faced adversities our nightmares are made of. To some of these remarkable women I am related, with some I share a close friendship and with others I have the privilege of teaching alongside. All these women inspire me. I often have a deep sense of awe as I witness their courage and perseverance. These women carry on their daily lives robed in bravery and boldness, they shun pity and walk with their heads held high. These women model strength to younger generations. It’s a beautiful thing to watch them laughing and celebrating life despite their experiences .
My daughter may one day find herself brewing in hot water. I pray that I will be able to equip her with the tools and skills to not get scorched but rather to emerge as an aromatic cup of tea. I have been blessed to have had strong women in my life to do this for me and now I take the baton.
I have a tea bag stuck onto my computer screen in my classroom as a daily reminder that whatever I am going through, I am not alone and I will come out stronger. The girls in my classes often ask me about it which gives me the opportunity to encourage and inspire them.
Next time you sit down with a cup of hot tea, take in the aroma, savour the taste and spare a thought for the inspirational women in your life.