In his well-known “Free Grace”, John Wesley said that the “grace or love of God, whence cometh our salvation, is Free in All, and Free for all”.
It has been a rather bumpy week in the health department. Odd, how the health card or lack there of trumps all else? In a real and overall sense, I have the feeling of swimming upstream. However, instead of complaining and grumbling about that, after this week, I somehow found a slight, ever so small crack in the armor. I have a feeling of relief. I feel proud that I am swimming in a different direction. The stream of sunlight is showcasing my growth. WHAT? Did I just say, I felt proud that I am swimming upstream? Whoa! When did that happen? It is pretty dang tootin’ freeing. Giving myself a little Grace here. Yes, it is freeing. I know I am going in the right direction. It is nice to admit it.
Did I do it by myself? Heck, no. I have some really great friends (angels really) , floating in and out of my life, that are poking me with an umbrella, in the fanny and encouraging me to get a move on.
If you read anything from JM Griffith, you look at friendship under a microscope. She tries to figure out the friendship “thing”. No, not the “how many friends do you have on face book”.
We are, all of us beholden to each person we’ve met and loved or wronged or ignored.
The friends you share secrets with. The friends you can ask for help without actually asking. The kind of friends that will read with you, learn with you, grow with you and sense when you need a little help. Share your bittersweet moments as well as the best moments of your life. You know, that moment when you need help and a true friend, laces their hands together for a step up? Yeah, that kind of friend.
The word “friendship” alone can sound cloying, shallow, sweet, feminine. JM Griffith said, she wanted it to be rough and gruff while sharing a pint of ale and debating theology. I guess I want a bit of both. Friendship as Grace are both free, so why not ask for the whole enchilada?
So on this Friday morning, I am rounding up my list of trusted friends who have bathed me in Grace this past week. It is good to sit back and review. Feel the love and pure goodness twice. I am grateful, so grateful for the gift of Grace in the form of friendship.
This week, I received a jaunty homemade card. Yep, she is there for me. Phone calls and emails and a text here and there. The friendship I receive from her is always encouraging and uplifting and she somehow manages to bathe me in Grace. She casually mentioned that she had gotten the book I was reading and will read it along with me. Just by saying that, she lifted our friendship to another level of respect and Grace. Without asking, this week, somehow, mysteriously she knew I needed a boost. A pick me up. She trusts me with her life’s stories.
After a mini meltdown about GMO’s and toxic laden foods, I reached out to a friend and she bathed me in the Grace of kindness and education. She has an amazing way of listening to my spirit and reminding me to breathe. She helps me with stories of real people and how they are worried too. Even thou she lives on the other side of the country, she said she would hang out in my sewing room with me and hide. I took a couple of pictures to show her what I was doing. She and I are twirling through a book by S.A.R.K. , together. Twice the goodness. She trusts me with her life’s stories.
I was lucky to visit in person with a new friend. She shared her passion. It felt good to try out the “new” friend shoes. Oh, my, they are a good fit and sassy. Yes, very sassy.
talked, strike that…………..I LAUGHED on the phone with my sis in law. I almost couldn’t breathe, I laughed so hard. She bathes me in Grace everyday of my life. She trusts me with her life’s stories.
I received several emails this week, from a friend who has walked with me through the muck and mire. She is walking through a bittersweet week and has plenty of her own health issues. However, she finds a way, a unique and lovely way of bathing me in Grace. She has a kind and silly way of reminding me to laugh and giggle. We celebrate our grands. She is the one person I can brag about my Grandgirlies and Grandson on the way and she brags right back about hers. It is a connection that helps me over the rough parts. She trusts me with her life’s stories.
Another friend, made two breathtaking beaded bracelets to give as graduation gifts. (and did it right before her holiday) Yes, I am supposed to take the class and learn how. She did it for me for now. She bought me a little time. I really wanted to give those as gifts to two very special graduates. She has a very unique way of bathing me in Grace. She never makes me feel less, she always makes me feel like a better person. We share girlie secrets and talk about kiddos and family and crafts and shoes. She always has time to talk about shoes. She is even kind enough to share a picture or two of her vacation while on vacation. I get to “go with her” to the quilt shop or out to dinner. Such a lovely thing to share. She trusts me with her life’s stories.
Friendship is Free. Friendship is pure Trust & Grace. It means the world to me. I try to be a good friend. I try to Bathe my friends in Grace. Because I was lifted up this week, I will be able to try a little harder next week.
Friendship ends up being another mystery, another place where God surprises us.
Take up the challenge! Surprise one of your friends by bathing them in the Grace of Friendship. It feels delicious. Go on, give it a try.
Happy Friday, Friend, Happy Free Grace Friday!