Can we talk friendship for a little bit today?
This morning, I was thinking about my friendships and identifying those friendships that have stood the test of time and the newer friends who I can’t imagine now my life without them. My BFFs from high school are still important to me. There are about six of us who stay in touch and, gosh, we’re all so very different in every possible way. But these women have known me from my 1980s hair and buck teeth until now. And seriously, the people who were with me in middle school and are still with me, I know they’re on Team TL forever.
Side note: I was listening to an old episode of the Sorta Awesome podcast yesterday. Megan and Laura dished on ten friends every woman needs. Y’all! SO freaking good!! You should go listen to it (once you finish reading this post, of course. ha!!). As I listened I thought about my friends and tried to figure out who plays the different roles in my “Life Council.” For example, who knows what is in my freezer? (That would be no one … because basically there’s not a lot to know on that topic.) Who knows all my social media passwords? (Scott does, of course, but it made me realize I need to make sure someone else knows too. I’m looking at you, Sandra!) Anyway, I don’t want to give away too much because I want you to listen to the podcast.
On Friendship, Bible Journaling, and Craving Connection
I mentioned the friends I’ve had the longest. But this blogging gig has brought me a whole crew of friends who have never lived in my town but who have embedded themselves in my heart. People like Kristin, Stacey, and Sandra who I either Vox, talk, or text with almost every day. These women are the ones who “get” writing, ministry, and all the craziness that goes with it.
And, of course, there is my incredible circle of real life friends. This includes family members like my mom, my sisters-in-law and my aunts and my cousins. But also those women from our time in Georgia—the ones who watched Casiday go from infant to teenager and prayed me through Scott’s long-term illness. And, now that we’re back in Alabama, I’m thankful for the friends we had before our ten-plus years away and the new friends we’ve made since coming back home.
Friendship is a gift, y’all.
To have women who invest in us and in our families. To have people who believe in our callings and giftedness. To have those who know when to bring coffee and chocolate. To have some who know your mood from the first word of a text. To have a few who can make you laugh with just a glance. To have at least a couple who will speak even hard truth into your life. To have many who will celebrate your successes and cry with your sorrows.
Friendship is one of God’s sweetest gifts to us, don’t you think?
So how do friendship, Bible journaling, and Craving Connection collide for me? Just like this — as I was pondering all of these things, I pulled out one of my journaling Bibles and went here —
A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a difficult time. Proverbs 17:17
I went through the list of all these women in my life—soul-nurturers, spirit-lifters, truth-speakers, laugh-givers, coffee-bringers, cry-with-you-ers, Jesus-followers, life-sharers, hope-believers, and willing-forgivers—and, through the tears, I just said thanks to the Lord. Because, wow! I have the most incredible friends! I didn’t do some huge spread in my Bible but I did want to mark this moment with something.
One of the things I love most about Bible journaling is the way it opens the door for me to stake a claim on a truth I’m learning or a new understanding God has given me. When I look at the images in my Bible, the words and colors and all the details remind me of how God is always at work in my life. I’m not the most gifted or creative Bible journaler but I do find it to be a great tool for slowing down and steeping myself in Scripture.
So, here’s the thing, let’s celebrate our friends!
And, because I hate to suggest something without giving you a way to actually do it, let’s be intentional about digging deep into the soil of friendships together. I’ll be going through the new book from (in)courage, Craving Connection: 30 Challenges for Real-Life Encouragement. One chapter a week beginning in February. And you can do it too! Read more about A-B-C in 2017 and join me!
Now I’m curious, who is the friend who knows what’s in your freezer??
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