Cynthia Heald is the best-selling author of numerous books and Bible studies, including Becoming a Woman of Excellence, Intimacy with God, and Uncommon Beauty. This month, Cynthia is leading a retreat at The Navigators Glen Eyrie Conference Center based on her recent book, Becoming a Woman of Simplicity. We wondered how simplicity became a major theme for her life and her writing.
Disciple!: Did input from your readers influence your most recent book?
Cynthia: Definitely. I am amazed at the intrusion of technology on our lifestyles, the influence of our culture, and the overwhelming needs of our society that pull us away from times of quiet with the Lord, unhurried time with family, and times just to be still and experience rest. I see this reflected in the women I meet all around the country and that influenced me.
Because of the need in my own life and my heart for other women, I felt led to write about simplifying our lives in order to grow in intimacy with the Lord, to become more fruitful for His Kingdom, and to have our strength renewed by resting in green meadows. This study, as all my other studies have been, was first and foremost for me and I pray that it will be helpful to others.
D!: Do you think that the process of growing a relationship with God is actually simpler than most women make it?
CH: I do. In fact author Oswald Chambers asks this question: “Is the relationship between myself and God getting simpler than ever it has been?” I have found that in order to grow in my relationship with God, I must spend time daily sitting at His feet listening to His Word.
For me, consistency is the key. It’s as simple as setting aside a few minutes each day to be still, read His Word, and pray. I refer to walking with the Lord as “keeping your hand in His.”
D!: How did you first get interested in writing Bible studies?
CH: When I turned 40 I realized that my life was probably half over. So I told the Lord that I always wanted to be in the center of His will. Later that year, I read Ruth 3:11 where Boaz tells Ruth that she is a woman of excellence despite being a young widow, living with an unhappy mother-in-law, and gleaning little hope of change. As I meditated on that verse I prayed that for the rest of my life I would be in the process of becoming a woman of excellence. I began to write down attributes of a woman of excellence and then wrote a study for the women in our church. A friend saw it, told NavPress, and the rest is history!
D!: Who do you look up to in your Christian walk?
CH: I have a dear older friend named Mary, who mentored me when I first began to grow in Christ. More than 40 years later we continue to keep in touch and she is always available for counsel and prayer.
Becoming a Woman of Simplicity
In a culture that pulls women in multiple directions, is it possible to adjust priorities, reexamine your time management, and reduce busyness in exchange for becoming like Jesus? Cynthia Heald offers practical help for women who struggle with the overwhelming demands of life.