Grace to Grow

I just had the privilege to catch up w an old friend & it was delightful to chat over coffee & remember some fun times together. It was also interesting to see how each of us has changed, grown and matured.
In all of or relationships, there are things that can bug us about the other person & clearly we have plenty of our own weakspots that can be very bothersome.
Let’s give each other grace to grow & then enjoy the journey. Only Jesus is the completed human masterpiece. The rest of us are works in progress 🙂

Strengths & Weaknesses

I was having an interesting chat with a friend, who is totally amazing. She is all things strong, bold, smart, hard working, loyal, compassionate & super incredible! In some respects, her talents are altogether different than my talents, which can be a wonderful adventurous friendship, as long as I keep my insecurities in check – smile 🙂
After having a great conversation, I hung up the phone & felt God smiling on me, affirming my value, talents & abilities even though they’re altogether different than my friends’. Let me encourage you that while you may be different than the people you admire, you are nevertheless just as valuable, important & significant as they are. When it’s all said & done, we need each other with our various strengths as complements to our various weaknesses rather than competition 🙂

Friends are cool!

One of the ways that God expresses Their love (Trinity) to us is through friendships – and we get to also be a conduit through which God can express Their love through us! What a cool way for genuine love to be multiplied 🙂
And here’s my thinking, I think that genuine love is unlimited & cannot be confined, so friendships are one of these ways for love to be demonstrated. God is so cool in all of the different ways that They express love to us!! Saving Moses is another way that God shows genuine love as well 🙂 YAHOOO!!

Need a friend?

It seems to me that we all need friends in lots of different ways. Thankfully, I’m experiencing God’s provisions in this area, well beyond what I deserve. One of the things I’ve been noticing lately is that God provides all different kinds of friends – friends who help me in areas where I’m very inadequate, friends who receive from God through our relationship, friends who keep things lite ( because I can tend to get too intense), friends who help me to be practical & I help them to be less practical ,) and lots more.
So here’s my thinking: it seems to me that God wants us to experience fellowship with God in LOTS of different ways, particularly through our various relationships & friendships. With this in mind, here are a few essential ingredients for some rich fellowship with God through our various friendships:
*be opulent with forgiveness, understanding that we experience God’s forgiveness toward us far more than we realize 🙂
*be gentle & patient: relationships grow & flourish well in an atmosphere of patience & gentleness
*listen & be present: answers & advice can often be less important than presence
*genuine love: the purest context to experience & get to know God

being friends with God

 I’ve been looking at John 15 & Jesus talks about being friends with God.  In verses 13-15, Jesus points out some interesting thoughts about being God’s friend:

  1. the greatest expression of friendship love is when we lay down our lives & allow God’s preferences to be our priorities
  2. friendship with God isn’t a co-equal friendship – Jesus says that we are His friends if we obey His commandments
  3. in our friendship, we get to hear what’s on God’s heart & in God’s thoughts
  4. God has chosen us to be friends – God has pursued us
  5. Out of our friendship, there’s lots of lasting fruit

Being God’s friend is a great privilege with indescribable rewards!!

Full of Grace

I had an interesting conversation with a friend yesterday for whom I’ve been very concerned of late. It was interesting because they explained that they had been distant lately because of lots of different current stresses in their life. Then another friend told me that she was having a rough day earlier this week & almost broke down in tears on a particular day. Both of my friends are important to me & when they explained their struggles to me, I totally wanted to reach out & help not only after the struggle but also during their rough time. Just like me, these are very strong & independent friends & I wholly respect their strength. It’s interesting bc I think that God absolutely respects our free will & independence. But I also think that God wants to be involved in our struggles & not just watch from a distance. Lets be kind, gentle, full of grace & supportive with each other – thereby letting God love through us 🙂

be picky ,)

I like to have lots of different kinds of friends.  I have friends with whom I talk sports, some that we talk about good books that we’re reading, others that we talk about spiritual issues, some that we discuss our kids and what’s happening in their lives, etc.  It seems to me that we each friend, there are some distinct conversational “sweet spots” and I’ve learned that there are various topics that are limited to certain friends.  For example, I don’t talk about sports with my friend who is my book buddy and I don’t talk about fashion with my “spiritual issues” friend.  Everyone definitely has their unique strengths and I love this!!

There is, however, one person with whom I I love talking about almost everything & that’s God.  But I think it’s unfortunate that even with God I find myself occasionly trying to limit the conversation because I don’t like the topic.  But  here’s the truth:  God is the only truly “safe” person with whom you can talk about literally anything and He will ALWAYS have constructive things to say to you, regardless of the topic.  Don’t limit your conversations with God 🙂