“I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for her,” said Mott, husband of Minister Bertha Gaymon.
On Thursday evening, a noticeably cold winter night, married couple Mott and Bertha Gaymon was instantly welcoming and warm contrasting the nighttime air.
Clothes, containers, and paperwork was scattered throughout their living room, family room and the kitchen. Laundry was folded in stacks on the couches.
Empty containers were placed away from the walkway and office work spilled out of the open door office as well as scattered the kitchen table. There was clutter but it lived in its suspected places and forms.
For just a brief moment, Mott joined his wife of 34 years on the loveseat in the family room to introduce Gaymon’s journey to purpose in an unexpected way.
“I think she’s still the same,” said Mott. “There’s been some transition, it’s all for the good, but she’s still the same person to me. That’s what makes it easy.” Mott let Gaymon tell the rest on her own.
Gaymon’s purpose as it stands today is to be a minister.
She stresses that this purpose was drastically unknown five years ago. “I know my purpose now and that is to be a minister, a woman of God,” said Gaymon. “It wasn’t necessarily on my radar to be a minister, nor did I ever have a desire.”
The 59-year-old minister, wife, professional and mother of three retells her thoughts on moving from one stage of life to the next and her purpose adjusting to match each stage.
“I have enough sense now to never say what I’m not going to do,” laughed Gaymon, reflecting on how God revealed her current purpose.
Gaymon’s passion is ministering to women, especially the younger generations in a compassionate, relatable way and to be devout like her role models.
“Something I’ve been doing for little over five years is counseling young women,” she mused. “It’s a different journey for women, and [I] counsel other younger women in areas that I know way too much about.”
Her role models helped ignite passion for ministering to women. Growing up and now Minister Gaymon’s role models were her mother, Catherine Bouldin – mother of seven daughters and devoted wife to Silas Bouldin, and two older members of her church family. She watched these women live as housewives “submissive to their husbands, kicking and screaming, when they didn’t want to be.”
Women who were born in generations prior to hers, like Bouldin, were taught to be submissive and in Gaymon’s words to be “barefoot and pregnant.”
Barefoot and pregnant is not her aspiration for other women nor was it for herself. Though, she admired that her role models were strong and still understood that in the Christian order the husband is meant to be the head of the household.
“Some people have a problem with the word ‘head’ and think that means you’re the boss of me,” said Gaymon. “No, it just means that the husband is the responsible one over the family.”
With that she still recognizes that women are “so much more than that” referring to being only silent caretakers. Gaymon continues the work of ministering to women struggling with insecurity motivating them to become their best selves in and outside of a marriage.
Another more critical moment in Gaymon’s transitioning journey was the loss of her first-born son, Leon.
Her humor and fervent attitude when talking about this tragedy changed into brief pauses and an attempt to draw back obvious upset. Leon died in a car accident on November 21, 2005.
“But I’m stronger,” said Gaymon. Her humor returned.
Gaymon emphasized that purpose changes as life has its normal ups, downs and transitions, siting her current most motivating scripture. Joshua 1:9: Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go (NIV).
“If you find a 20, 30-year-old who’s absolutely firm in what they want to do, send them to me!” said Gaymon amused.
Reflection, understanding and esteem came to surface as Gaymon spoke of her journey to purpose and humility ended the evening’s conversation. She reflected for a moment on what she’d like her legacy to create when it is all said and done.
“I want people to hear my name and smile,” said Gaymon.