Tag Archives: woman to woman

A Friendship That Lasts

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Proverbs 17:17
“A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.”

Have you ever struggled with loneliness or maintaining friendships? Over the years, I have noticed how sensitive I can be (and I wrote about this recently).  I wrote specifically about the dangers of social media, because thanks to the Internet, we can see things that we were never able to see before: that party that we didn’t get invited to, the women’s ministry team that went out for lunch and I saw pictures of it but never received an offer to join in.

As women, it’s easy to take those things and internalize them. I’ve noticed too, that women in mid-life often struggle with relationships.  As the children grow, the demands on our time change. As the family grows, the dynamics change. The demands on my time are so much greater now than they were when all of our children  were little.  I have five  young children at home and my oldest children are in their early twenties.  The older ones are going through their own sort of growing pains, spreading their wings—and they need me in a different way than the little ones do—all this means that at the end of the day, I’m very tired—and I have less time now for things outside my immediate family than I once did.

Have you been there too?

I’m so glad for friends that understand seasons of life.

As the years pass, I find that the friendships I cherish the most are with those women that I can run and visit with at the drop of a hat.  A dear friend of mine who I may or may not hear from for months at a time will give me me a call just to say, “Hey! I was just praying for you!  Tell me how you’re doing.” Those friendships last.

They last because we choose to believe the best about each other, rather than the worst. We believe the best for each other, too.  If you’re struggling with a friendship today, I want to encourage you to ask the Lord to give you His eyes for your friend.

As many of you know, I have a mantra.  It is “No Drama, Mama!”  I really believe that the Lord would have us extend grace to each other.  If you have a friend who is not “hitting the mark” in your relationship today, ask the Lord to give you His perspective. As Him to give you grace for your friend for that moment and then see what He’ll do.

True friendships are worth it.  They’re worth investing in and they will survive the tough seasons of life.

A friend loves at all times,
heidi

Heidi St John Firmly Planted Family Devotional For All Ages

Being Real

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Colossians 4:18
“I, Paul, write this in my own words. Remember my chains.”

It’s interesting that Paul, this champion for Christ, this man who “gave it all” for Jesus to the point of martyrdom, was real enough to ask for prayer. Real enough to say “remember my chains.”  He told the people exactly what was struggling with and he asked his friends to share it far and wide.

He was being real. He wasn’t hiding. I believe it’s because Paul knew that he needed all the help he could get.  It’s a good lesson for all of us.

It’s easy as moms to hide, isn’t it? It’s easy to put on a brave face and pretend that we have it all together.  For me, it’s often easier to get on Facebook or my blog and talk about the things that are going right.  After all—who wants to talk about the things that are going wrong?  That’s embarrassing!

Truthfully, no one is encouraged when we appear to have it all together.  What IS encouraging though, is to hear a mom talk about her everyday struggles and be real about them while not giving up. It’s encouraging to see moms who follow Jesus through struggles and difficulties. That’s the example that Paul set for us.

I want to encourage you today to be real with those people around you who God has put into your life. Tell them when you’re struggling and when you’re succeeding—and walk in truth with each other.

When we pray for each other, we tap into the power of God. The Bible tells us that true strength comes from God.  There are no guarantees—but when we surrender our lives to the One who made us, we find a peace that passes understanding.

Give it a shot today, busy mom. Be real with each other. Pray for each other. Encourage one another. And then, see what the Lord will do.

 

 

5 Ways to Just Say {NO} to Drama

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Oops. I did it again.

I didn’t mean it—never mind.

Yes, I did.

I knew when I vague-booked that little “hint” that so-and-so would eventually get it. And secretly, I hoped it would be sooner rather than later. I wanted her to know she hurt me. Secretly, I wanted to wound her back.  I knew that if I called her out by name online I’d be fouled on a technicality—because that would clearly be wrong—so I did what any reasonable, mature, spirit-filled woman would do: I hinted about it on Facebook.  Just a short statement. It looked innocent on the outside, yet truthfully it was anything but innocent.

As you can probably guess,  it backfired.

And it created more drama for me than the drama I have every day simply by virtue of the fact that I have seven children. Trust me when I say that just having the seven children can generate enough drama in a day to seriously cripple most human beings. No kidding.

But for some reason, I just had to add another layer of drama. *sigh*  Why?

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For all the “keep it simple, sweetie” talk and all our good intentions to say we want to be examples for our children, we’re allowing the Internet to tempt us into exposing an ugly side of ourselves. It’s true. Have you seen it too?

Now let me be clear: I love Facebook. I love blogging. But it has an ugly side: The Internet has provided a new generation with the opportunity to practice a brand new form of passive/aggressive behavior—simply using vague, online hints.  See if any of these sound familiar:

I need prayer. People are just so unkind.

I am asking the Lord to help me have a forgiving heart.

Hurt and frustrated, but moving on.

Seriously, people?

I need prayer to deal with a “situation”.

It’s embarrassing to admit, but I’m pretty sure I’ve used all of these statements at one time or another in the past several years. And I see them floating around on other pages every day.

I have to ask myself, “What makes me different?”  Am I doing what I know is right?

1 Thessalonians 5:11
Therefore encourage one another and build each other up.

Are you tired of the drama? Me too, and here’s the thing: We need to stop this behavior. Or at the very least, we need to recognize we’re behaving badly by our little online jabs and begin to change our tone  Why? Because it’s not solving anything. And it’s robbing us of peace.

Well, and it’s making us look like bratty children who can’t get along. Yeah. That too.

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If you’re surrounded by or creating drama of your own, I get it.  I’m a recovering drama mama myself. Here are five ways to help you just say NO to drama:

  1. Listen. We need to become better listeners. Especially to that “still small voice” that we hear while we’re writing those drama-inviting posts. You know, that voice. It’s the voice we usually hear but choose to ignore.
  2. Prefer others. This means that we consider the preciousness of the relationships around us, including—but not limited to—the person we’re hoping will see that “vague” post we wrote. In the same way we don’t need unnecessary drama, our friends who have no idea what in the world we’re talking about don’t need it either.
  3. Stop trespassing. Sounds simple—but when you’re prone to trespassing (in other words, injecting yourself into a situation that you have no business being in) you literally invite drama. So, when you see a vague post, don’t reply. Don’t add fuel to the fire. Or, if you feel the need to reply, do it privately.
  4. Be quiet. Do you remember “Stop, Drop and Roll?” This simple saying was taught to me when I was very young as a way to remember how to escape a house fire.  The next time you are tempted to invite drama into your life, try this: “Stop, Drop IT, Roll on outta there”  🙂
  5. Be intentional in your relationships.  Proverbs 15:1 says, “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”  BOY. Ain’t that the truth.  Let me just add, a “vague” word stirs up anger, too.  If you feel the need to be vague because you are upset with someone, you probably shouldn’t be talking about it at all.  And putting things like “I can’t believe some people” on Facebook—well, that’s not getting us anywhere.

Of course, there are many ways outside of the Internet that we can invite, stir up or even cause hurtful, unnecessary drama in our lives. Even good things can go bad if we’re not careful: prayer groups (where gossip is justified), moms groups… well, you can add your own.  You know what I mean.

Bottom line: No Drama, Mama!  If your heart races when you see a post on Facebook or on another Internet site,

STOP. DROP {it}. ROLL {on outta there}.

If you need to address something that should be private, do it privately. If you’ve been hurt, don’t put it on the Internet. Just say “no” to vague-booking. Season your speech with grace. And if you are in a relationship that continually pulls you into more drama, it might be time to consider putting healthy boundaries on that relationship.

While we will never be able to be totally drama-free, we sure can eliminate a lot of it by being intentional about our relationships.

As mothers, we have an opportunity to show our children how to be “drama-free” in their own lives by demonstrating how to do it. What a gift we could give them.

You can do it, busy mom!

I’m committing to being a “No Drama Mama.”  How about you?

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Pardon my dust. I’m creating a drama-free zone.
Heidi

Heidi St John Guide to Daylight