Love Letter to the Women Who Mean So Much to Me

I think that the term best friend has lost some of its flavor.  Back in the day-day, best friends were as distinguishable as the smell of curry in the hallway of a diverse apartment building in D.C.  If a girl said that someone was her best friend, you could best believe that the two of them would be melded together like the sweet, sticky syrup to the dough on a cherry pastry.  And consistently so–no matter what!  They’d take on each other’s personalities, look out for each other, and fight (of course), but they would essentially create a world made just for the two of them, through which they would freely and creatively express themselves and in which they would endeavor to live for the rest of their lives.

But now it seems like a BFF has been reduced to a fad, the latest trend.  And as her ability to accessorize with your life changes, so do the ideals of friendship.  For some people, that term-BFF needs to be amended to BFFN–Best Friend For Now!  And I am so sad to report that there are even some of us who can’t say that we have very many friends at all–much less a best friend.  I hear so many women proudly say, “I don’t do women.  I prefer to deal with men, ’cause women are just too much.”  And I think that’s just a shame.  I really believe that we are a reflection of each other and if we refuse to unite then what side of ourselves are we giving each other to reflect upon?  And why are we okay with that?

Well, I have come as the BF Fairy to restore your faith in friendship!  (get excited) One fateful day (some years ago today, in fact), the giver of all good and perfect gifts opened up the windows of heaven and poured me out a blessing , and even now, this woman is my ride or die, tried and true homie. I am so grateful that I get to call my mom one of my dearest, bestest, good friends.  I’ve shared my whole, whole, life with her.  She’s seen me inside and out, ugly and beautiful and yet she still loves me.  And she still chooses me, day after day.  She calls me, just to talk, just to know what’s going on with me and to share what’s going on in her life, with me.  She trusts me.  She was careful not to befriend me too soon.  She did me the honor of making sure that I had her love as my mommy before she ever thought of me as a friend.  And it’s because of her that I can dream impossible dreams and pray with faith that the Lord will sift through them and give me what He deems best for me.  She is one of  the most sweet-hearted women I’ll ever know.  I’ve never seen strength and vulnerability contained so beautifully in a person as with my mom.  She’s my shoulder to cry on, laughing buddy, prayer partner, my biggest fan.  And I would not be who I am today if it were not for her.  There is no tribute effective enough to do her justice.  You’d have to meet her to know that these few words were a meager attempt and only hint at the wonder of God’s goodness that she personifies.  She’s inspiration and aspiration to all things higher and greater.  My mommy.

I have a friend who, over the years, has transcended as more than my friend–she is my sister.  I can try to minimize our relationship to words just so that I can tell you exactly how and why it’s been as sweet as it is and still the best that I can say is that in her heart, there I sit–along with her mother, her family, the greatest loves of her life and her darling baby girls.  Her actions toward me have been the spokesperson for these sentiments.  She’s always wanted me to be a part of her life and she has done her share of the work to make it happen.  She tells me all the time that she is going to be the Gayle to my Oprah and this is not because she is settling for being a Gayle until she finds her inner Oprah but because she believes in me wholeheartedly and she gives me the strength, courage and wisdom to pitch my tent among the stars while I rest and dream on a cloud.  I can see the beauty of who I am, and who I aspire to be, naturally reflected in the light of her essence.  She’s been like a mother’s love–comforting, correcting, and sacrificing so that I can be, me.  Of course we’ve had our fights and our friendship has suffered some turmoil.  I’ve wanted to slam and suplex her but I honestly cannot imagine my life without her.  She’s my BFF.

But here’s the real doozy:  I have so many wonderfully incredible women in my life who, through the years and even right now, have deeply effected who I am.  In some cases they have been better to me than I to them.  There is so much grace in that.  I am a big ole mess and if anyone were to decide to give up on me, I couldn’t hold an argument worthy of making them change their mind.  But I’ve got some sit-ins-at-the-lunch-counter-during-the-civil-rights-movement kind of women in my life!  They shall not be moved!!  Each woman who I have the privilege of calling mine in any capacity is a representation of the truth I seek as I grow and develop as a woman of integrity, a woman of grace, a woman of standard, a woman of God.  They not only are friends, they are goals, for if I can but strive to attain the beauty of self and character that these women possess I just may become the first real-life superwoman.  Yes, I love my best friend and her light shines brightly in my life but the evolution of my refinement is continued in the summer, spring, winter and fall that are all of my friends and some of the women in my family and church as well.

Through my life I celebrate you all–a beautyFULL, spring bouquet in the center of an elegant table setting.  You allow me to adorn myself in the petals of your love and grace and in so doing you have given me the confidence to sashay about with confidence in this harsh, judgemental, mean world.  As my stilettos leave holes in the ground, I continue your legacy, inviting those who come behind me to plant a seed in fertile soil–the results of which will be deep, strong roots and the rich, succulent fruit of God’s productivity yielded through me from you.

And all of this– not simply because of me but because God loved me so much that he specifically and thoughtfully placed all of you in my life.

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Wednesdays with Beth

 

Beth Moore is continuing her series on Life Today about family entitled Family Calamity and Restoration.  It’s a revealing and encouraging look at a body of people that everyone belongs to or longs for.  Family is the most common people group across geographical and cultural boundaries.  Every family is not made up identically but, because people are involved, you can be sure there is a certain amount of both positive and negative emotions and interactions in each one.  Every family may not have the constant hardships of  the Evan’s (and even they were able to experience some good times) but hey the Cosby’s dealt with some stuff too! ;0)

My family of origin is a beautiful yet dysfunctional unit of people.  We love each other but we have hurt and wounded each other so deeply.   There are hurt feelings, broken relationships, secrets, and the gamut of sin that keeps us separated from each other.  And I know that Satan would have it no other way because without healing, our destinies are compromised.  I fight against hopelessness because sometimes it seems like nothing is changing or that things are getting worse.  Hearing the testimony and the word of God through Beth Moore has simply been good.  She is encouraging and giving me that bit of hope I need to trust the most trustworthy member of my family; My abba father.

It’s a big deal, family, and our family of origin is one of the things that we cannot control.  So, what in the world are we to do with them?  How do we heal together when they act as if nothing is broken? How do we grow past being okay with things being “alright” but not excellent?  Is it ever okay to walk away from the people we call our family?  What does true restoration look like and what is our (believers) part in it?  I think that the Lord is using Beth Moore to help with the answers to these questions and then some.

Check out the other parts in the series below.

http://lifetoday.org/video/family-calamity-and-restoration-part-3

http://lifetoday.org/video/family-calamity-and-restoration-part-4

http://lifetoday.org/video/family-calamity-and-restoration-part-5

The Working Out of 1 Corinthians 13

 

I had a boyfriend who inspired this quote.  I didn’t write this, and surely the person who did didn’t know my boyfriend at the time, but it fits him so much that it seems like she did.  He was an amazing guy.  Still is.  And so much more.  I know so well because I married him.  I get to spend my days and nights with this wonder and I am grateful.

I could have lived happily ever after in just the sheer the bliss of our dating days.  Survived on the love and passion alone.  We had so much fun and we thoroughly enjoyed each other and our time together.  We didn’t live in the same city so when we were together it was like wild abandon to the rest of the world as we squandered away all of our time just being together,  laughing, getting to know each other, falling in love at every opportunity.  One day,  I realized that I was tired of having to tearfully say goodbye to him and I knew I wanted to spend the rest of my life with him.  I was hoping that he was feeling the same.  He was. :0)

I just knew that marriage would provide mounds of endless happiness and multiples of all that was good about our dating relationship.  I am so in love with him and I love him with so much of me but marriage is hard.  It is a big thing to deny myself for the good of him daily, moment by moment.  It is yet another thing to I Corinthians 13 love him.  And I fail.  I fail, I fail, I fail.  But I keep trying.

So, the other day I was over on The Run A Muck http://therunamuck.com/ and I saw such a brilliant and life giving idea:  writing marriage letters to your spouse in the post “Share the Beauty:  Marriage Letters Topics” (http://therunamuck.com/2012/03/25/share-the-beauty-marriage-letters-topics/).

This may not seem like such a big deal to you, but I have tried to do things similar to this and couldn’t hang in there because it just seemed like a load to do.  What Amber is suggesting is that we write to the prompts given each Monday in April.  It’s a simple investment in my marriage, one of the most valuable relationships on earth to me, and I’m learning that every little gesture for my marriage is a deposit into a life giving source to the deepest parts of me.  I’ll be sharing my letters each Monday either whole or in part with you here, in hopes that it will encourage you to do the same for your spouse.

For you single ladies out there, perhaps this is the time for you to write letters to God about the man you desire.  Be transparent with Him about how you feel about your relationship status right now be it single, divorced, or single but in a dating relationship.  Wherever you are in that journey, I can promise it’s worth waiting on Him to instruct you on what moves to make.  I can say that based on my own experiences and the experiences of others that have directly or indirectly effected me.  As I said, I love my man and I love being married but it’s tough sometimes.  In those times when it’s hardest, it’s good to know that I have a gift given directly from the hand of my Father, even when it doesn’t feel like it. You want to know that you know that you got your mate from Him.  He gives such good gifts.  And I want to take care of the gifts he graces my life with.

So I’ll be a letter writing sister each Monday in April.  I hope it blesses you as much as I believe it’s going to bless me, my huni and our sweet little marriage.

Monday Morning Thanks

I went to bed much too late last night.  Much too late for a mom who has to get up and be full on first thing in the morning of a new day where grace lies fresh and new, waiting for me to receive it–if only I would  just. get. up.

Most mornings I just lie there, pleading for more night hours, more time to just . . . lie there.  Here lately it seems that I’m never ready to face a new day.  Even though I usually fight dread, this morning  I just got up and made a start.  I had it in my mind that I would pass through my morning with praise and thanksgiving and purpose and just see what would happen.  And that’s what I did.

I opened my eyes and . . .

134. Thank you, Lord for another day.

Then realized that without qualifying it I had indeed rested the night hours away.

135.  Restful sleep, uninterrupted as you protected my family, my home and me through the night.

And when a bill collector rang my phone first thing, threatening to steal what little peace and joy I was collecting for the day as I would normally descend into fret about the lack of funds to pay up, I didn’t fret I just added to the list:

136.  Another chance to pay my debts.

As my huni rushed noisily about, scampering madly from the bedroom to the bathroom seemingly unaware of a tired woman trying to put together a morning, a day, again I added:

137.  A diligent man, determined to make it to work on time.

138.  Your provision for my family through a job that E loves and enjoys.

Dressed myself.  Moved into the room of two little girls, wildly excited to start a new day, the sun shining through their window, inviting them to be happy and bask in another chance at discovering their world.

139..   Sweet baby voices acquiring speech and using it well!

Made our way downstairs.  Breakfast.

140.  Delicious, healthy food to feed little tummies.

141.  The silence of breakfast.

142.  Two satisfied tummies.

143.  The silence of breakfast.  The sweet, sweet silence of happily eating girls.

And we, together, did chores . . .

144.  A clean house.

. . .had lessons . . .

145. Eagerly learning little girls.

. . .played together . . .

146.  Peacefully (and sometimes not so much) playing sisters. :0)

. . .and shared yet another meal together . . .

147.  Izzie reciting the grace before her lunch.

148.  The cute little way Ava leans her head to one side displaying an irresistible cheek to kiss.

. . . and before I knew it, it was . . .

149.  Naptime.

To see more click  my one thousand  https://pamelluce.com/my-one-thousand ‎

Loving Pinterest

Here’s a glance at what I’ve got going on my Pinterest page!

To see more, check me out on Pinterest:  http://pinterest.com/pamelovely

Here’s a crockpot cheesecake I pinned to my FoOoOoOd page that I’m going to try soon:

Source: crockpotladies.com via Pamela on Pinterest

Other stuff on my page:

Source: projectwedding.com via Pamela on Pinterest

Source: Uploaded by user via Pamela on Pinterest