Cheers to You, Friends!

Over the last decade (and change), since becoming a mother, I have had different friends enter the landscape of my motherhood. Each has contributed something precious and necessary: community, advice, support, assistance, and laughter.

Must. Have. Laughter!

While all of my friends aren’t mothers (hello Jason, Joan, Sarah!!!), I’m focusing in on those fellow mamas today.

Some have come alongside to help me see clearly, when my eyes were too filled with tears to do so on my own. I’m thinking of my sweet friend Ally, who listened as I relayed a devastating fear about Sweetboy, and just held my hand and patiently listened and prayed with me.  And Dana, who hears my deepest anxieties, and prays with me then and there to allay them. They are truly like Job described when he spoke of a friend interceding on behalf of another – “…let him plead with God for a human being, like a person pleads for a friend.” 

Also, I’m thinking of a brave and kind friend, Aimee. We met as part of a weekly playgroup for Sweetgirl when she was a toddler. I was unable to see some obvious developmental needs emerging in her, so focused was I at the time on getting Sweetboy acclimated in our new town. Her words were so kindly spoken at just the right time.

Others have helped lift my eyes to the Right Place, when I forgot to. I think of my bold friend Kim who walked with me through my initial depression diagnosis; and, who weathered a mighty storm, side-by-side with me, with our then shared church family. She truly modeled Proverbs 17:17 – “A friend loves at all times, and a {sister} is born for adversity.”

I have deep thankfulness for my friends Rae, Kristy, and Erin, who push me and encourage me to keep writing and dreaming and become the best little writer that God wants me to be!

And then, there have been the precious few who have provided much-needed comic relief. My fiery-haired friend Erin, quick-witted friend Janet, and round-table friends Monica and Katie . I welcome the bellyaches from All The Laughter, and their cheerful hearts truly do bring a smile to my face. Often!

These are just some of the friends in my life. And, I cherish each one. Speaking with older friends and family members about their own friendships, I see the eternal Truth and Wisdom in these Words:

Two are better than one, because they have good pay for their work. For if one of them falls, the other can help him up. But it is hard for the one who falls when there is no one to lift him up.

Each new friend that God graces me with, online or off, provides more reasons to be grateful. Whether we share a love of God, writing, or eating – whether we’re commiserating over how hard it is to be a parent, spouse, or not eat – having friends to lift me up is truly a gift that I cherish.

And a special shout-out to those of you in this here blogosphere – you hold a special place in my heart. I can’t hardly express how much joy your comments and encouragements bring to my heart.

So…

Cheers to you, my friends! Thank you for being one.

Yes indeedy!

Here_To_Friends_Missindeedy

 

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Let Me Tell You

“Who are you voting for, mama?” This is a question that the Sweetkids like to ask every November. In this house, we care about politics. And, although I’m not going to tell you who, let me tell you why.

Because, I am firm believer in the process.

Because, I believe that all people in this country are entitled to a say.

Because, I’m an eternal optimist.

Because, “I Voted” stickers!

vote_missindeedy

The only way to triumph over the injustices you see happening in the world is to do something about it. For some of us, one of the most powerful things we can do about it, is to vote about it.

So, in this house, we do.

Ahab loves to engage in political discussery. (The word shall stand!) His passion for political issues trickled right on down to me. Passion was never more prominently displayed than when Ahab had A Word about an issue.

The man had, and has, ‘a word’ often.

About many an issue.

Recently, he sent me one of those “forward” emails about where the words “right” and “left” came from. A friend had forwarded it to him. He found it worthy of passing on to me. (And that is how those abominable forward emails persist.)

Ecclesiastes 10:2 was provided as food for thought, in this one.

A wise man’s heart inclines him to the right,
    but a fool’s heart to the left.

I reminded Ahab, in a non-fireworks kind of way, I assure you, that anytime one of those “forward” emails are sent, I trash them.

“WHY?!? Why would you do that without even looking at them,” he asked.

Let me tell you why.

Because, although he and I will discuss an initial idea into the ground, most people read one of those blasted things and make all sorts of assumptions. Without any further verification or research.

Yes, the verse says that Right does good and Left goes wrong. Yes, it’s Biblical. Yes, I believe the Bible is True.

That’s where my agreement with the original writer of the email ends.

Immediately after reading it, I went on a search to find out what the original Biblical text meant by the words ‘left’ and ‘right’ (because, although Solomon was wise, he didn’t invent the political two-party system). I found something interesting. The original intent of the word “right”, in the context of this passage of scripture has to do with dexterity. Dexterity!

To be clear, what Matthew Henry noted in his commentary (and I love me some Matthew Henry! If it was good enough for Charles Spurgeon, it’s good enough for me.) was the mindfulness with which a wise person goes about the task at hand. Back in King Solomon’s time (the writer of Ecclesiastes), most folks used their right hand to accomplish an end with mastery and skill. Lefties, I’m sorry. This implies that the left-handed were wayward in their abilities.

Forgive them Father, they did not know.

I’m married to a lefty. He is brilliant. #notbiased Handedness doesn’t decide who is wise.

How in the sam hill does any of this connect with voting?

I’m not blindly following along with what’s emailed handed to me. I’m not listening to the attack ads, reading the propaganda, jumping on a bandwagon. The Creator endowed me with a mind.

I choose to use it, as I explore what it means to love God and people with every bit of it.

So, let me tell you why you should vote.

Taking the time to delve into the issues, that will indeed affect us all at some point, is wise.

Casting your ballot, whether to the right or the left, or somewhere in the green, honors the God who gives authority to governments.

Showing up to vote, models an interest in your community and the laws and leaders that affect them.

You, my friend, were created with a mind. Use it.

Go Vote!