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Purse-sue the Gospel

Sue Duffield

Laugh Lines

 I love the name of our district’s Women’s Ministries: “Women of Purpose.” We are truly women of purpose, never drifting from our calling, our passion or our direction. I was telling a friend of mine how excited I was to be heading to New York for the Women of Purpose event, where about a thousand women would be attending. She immediately started convulsing in laughter. I said, “What’s so funny about a thousand women coming to a Christian conference? I think it’s pretty awesome.” The belly laughter continued, and I was becoming defensive and confused.

 Finally I interrupted her and said, “Judy, what in the world are you laughing about?”
She responded, giggling and stumbling through her words, “I thought you said, ‘Women of Purses,’ and I immediately pictured fanatical women, storming the registration tables, yelling and screaming, raising their designer bags and fancy Bibles like a scene from a chaotic Black Friday news report!”

 Once we gained our composure, she said, “You know, come to think of it, I’m in the market for a new purse but I just can’t seem to find anything I like or can afford these days.” I told her matter-of-factly, “Goodness Judy, that’s your problem. Get out of the ‘market’ and go to an outlet store or mall or something. I’ve never seen a purse in a grocery store that I’d want either.” The laughter resumed all over again!

 My mother was a purse collector. I quit counting her clutch arsenal at about eighty. I didn’t inherit that fashionista handbag gene. My daughter—who is more like her grandmother than her own mother—buys into this purse-driven way of life. As for me, I actually have a total of four handbags. That’s right. And three of them were gifts. I prefer to carry a small card/money wallet in my back pocket!

 At a retreat I attended recently, we played a game where we all threw our handbags in the middle of the room and at the count of three, we all launched out and grabbed one! It was both hilarious and invasive to think of going through another woman’s sacred purse space. But it was an incredibly humbling icebreaker and a fun way to see what your friends carry in their handbags! Some of my favorite findings that day were a pair of pink handled pliers, a TV remote, travel size Charmin toilet seat covers, a Pennsylvania deer- hunting license, and a fork.

 So what’s in your wallet? Here are some staples to carry:

 1. Hand sanitizer. A must these days.

 2. A multi-use object, like a mini pen and tool/screwdriver/tweezers gadget. It’s not just for the boys! I found this handy when I needed a small Allen wrench on a bike trip.

 3. A single-use mini-toothbrush with toothpaste—a great invention! Wish I had the patent on that one.

 4. Allergy medicine. Just in case you have a bad reaction or come in contact with something offensive.

Now for a spiritual review:

1. Sanitizer reminds us to keep our heart pure.

 2. Our greatest tool is God’s Word. Have you spent time reading it today?

 3. Every fresh breath of God is a reminder of His presence in our lives. “The Spirit of God has made me; the breath of the Almighty gives me life” (Job 33:4, NIV).

 4. When having a bad reaction to someone who needs forgiveness, think on this: “In prayer there is a connection between what God does and what you do. You can’t get forgiveness from God, for instance, without also forgiving others. If you refuse to do your part, you cut yourself off from God’s part” (Matthew 6:14, The Message).



SUE DUFFIELD is a heart-warming and honest storyteller, singer/songwriter and freelance writer who travels extensively sharing her faith, music, and comic relief. She and her husband of 35 years, Jeff, travel in and out of the country doing retreats, conferences and special events. Visit her website at, follow her on Facebook at, or follow her on Twitter @sueduffield.

    © 2011 National Women's Department, General Council Assemblies of God

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