One of the best parts of the Christmas season is it gives us gals the perfect excuse to “get together.” Whether it’s over coffee, Cracker Barrel (yummy), together at a party, or in the parking lot when you just happen to run into one another…..Christmas just seems to get us all in that “let’s hang out” mood.
I have been able to spend time with friends that I have known over fifteen years and friends that I just met a few months ago. Friendships that are unique and contribute something to who I am as a person….compliment who I am and stretch me towards where I hope to be as I mature. (Not get old..mature!)
I know how blessed I am to have girlfriends. Shoot, even if I could only say one name when asked, that’s still more than I could possibly deserve….cause, shhhh…don’t tell anyone…but this chick is one hot mess most days! I sometimes call my life “organized chaos.”
There was a time in my younger life that I would see “Sally” and think to myself…”I want Sally as my friend.” See that phrase “I want?” Well, I learned (with many bruises), that “I want” is the last phrase you can use as you travel through seasons and God brings women into your life. Friendship takes effort, but the friendships God has sent for you…well…they come easily. You get to be you…nothing more..nothing less…and then it’s up to you to grow and foster that relationship. Sorta like that plant on the deck……ignore it…it dies. Give it some attention…and it will grow. (Wait…maybe that doesn’t apply to me, because anything with a root brought past my driveway…dies. No, seriously, who else can kill pansies???)
I think back to those times in my younger life that I would see a “group” and long to be included. Maturity teaches you that “that group” is for them…..and God knows it’s not for you and that’s why that thick wall around “that group” never seems to thin. God has you a group…it may be one person plus you..or it may be five people or more….that’s the group you want. God’s group for you. Then again, we may have times where all we want or need is God in our group…and that’s more than enough. Seasons….
So, as the Christmas season has quickly come and is quickly approaching “the day”, I’ll be honest…..a speed-bump by Satan himself, was put on my path where my heart lies. You know, one of those bumps in the road that forces you to pick up that Bible and remind yourself of God’s promises….and that bump that maybe brings you back to a book you read a while back…..and that brings us to “the Book” in the blog title.
This is a recommendation for every single female out there….fifteen and up. Go now…and purchase “Grown-Up Girlfriends” by Erin Smalley and Carrie Oliver. It’s filled with Biblical knowledge, wonderful words of wisdom and timely guidance in how to navigate those female relationships.
Topics such as: The Grown-Up Friend is Committed to Knowing Herself, Setting Boundaries, Embracing Differences, Forgiveness in Friendship, Overcoming Destructive Friendships (Ya’ll know these happen.), When to Let Go of a Friend, and Friendship Requires Us to Grow Up!
Some of the words, verses that I just go back to and want to share are these:
Proverbs 17:9 He who covers over an offense promotes love, but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends. (Gals, ya’ll get this one? Don’t gossip, don’t run to Sally with an matter of an offense about Mary-go to Mary…..oh. how us gals have to work so hard on this one.)
Good friendships are fragile things and require as much care as any other fragile and precious thing. Randolph Bourne
I think one of my favorite pages is page 67. Women, by nature, are quick to let Satan start putting fear in their minds…and on page 67 a list of “fears” and how those fears may sound in our head or in our word vomit to ourselves and others…..just a wonderful list of how powerful Satan is when it comes to being divisive in friendship and how he longs to prevent us from knowing that special gift God has for us women….
This is Christmas and today I am so grateful for my friends….those who came in at a season and are now gone…those in my season now and those very rare and special forever friends…..each helping to shape who I am and who I am to be. How cool is that!