Friends with benefits. Do I have a few? Are you kidding me, I have at least 10!
You are thinking while holding your hand to your chest, “oh my, she’s a Christian girl, a mother, a wife!”
Let me tell you all about them.
“So one”…Get your mind out of the gutter, haha!
Well actually, I will tell you a little bit about some of “them.”
Sister-Friend –One calls me “sis.” She calls and checks on me on a regular basis. She deposits money into my PayPal account every now and again because she can “hear ” that we are in a tight spot but knows that I would never ask for help. She and her sister buy my children gifts, just because. She knows exactly how to make me laugh, when to get me away from all the craziness, and just how to tell me “everything will be ok.” She has adopted me as her little sister and I have adopted her as my big sister. I always wanted a sister and now I have one.
Sugar and Spice-This one is on fire for God and beautifully seeks Him with all of her heart. She has a sweet calm voice, loves to host, goes out of her way to let you know that she appreciates you. Don’t let the sweetness fool you though, her German-side will tell me about myself, with a smile of course. She teaches me how to be a better person, wife, and mother just by how she lives her life. Oh, and she can bake a mean cheesecake! She reminds me of my great-grandmother that was also part German. She supports everything I do and want to do and I do the same with her. We hold each other accountable. We are so different but share a love for God(and a good laugh). We love to talk in little old Southern lady voices to each other(while drinking sweet tea, of course) and know deep-down inside that we will one day be those little old Southern ladies…and good old friends. Every year our friendship grows deeper and deeper. “Well honey, you know who you are, now don’t you!”
Beaches- This friend, when we first met we instantly hit it off and became best friends. We just knew our husbands would be good friends too. Since day one, meeting in our church bookstore, we have been inseparable. Well, actually we have been separated because she moved thousand of miles away, but thank goodness for FaceTime and her move back home! We laugh at the same things, we have very similar taste in just about everything. We are Aunties to each other’s kids. We are like Cici and Hilary from the movie Beaches- we always are there for each other, through good and bad, and always will be. I’m more sensitive. She is more of a risk-taker. She’s resilient! She also has pretty awesome hair. “Goodbye for now!”
Carmen San Diego- We met in college. She transferred to our college from another school to be closer to her ill mother. She always had a serious facial expression and was about business but inside had a heart of gold. I managed to make her smile a few times and loosen up. I was there for her when her mother died. She was there for me when I found out I was barren. I was her bridesmaid and she was a part of my wedding. She’s a powerhouse professional and now a wife and a great mother. I have lost count of how many moves she has had all across the country. She travels the world but still always manages to check in, send an encouraging word, and no matter how busy she is, she even manages to stop by for a visit if she’s in town to see my kiddos and I. She’s the definition of loyal.
Ruth- This woman is bold, confident, and strong. You would think she is the tallest and largest woman in the world… She is 5 feet tall and probably a size 2 on a good day! She is fierce! She is a non-holds bar, stern, and blunt woman. She wears many hats, even in our friendship. She don’t play! She has a passion for serving and is beyond generous, if it’s a worthwhile cause. My kids love her like she’s another grandmother. She encourages me and gives me direction, which sometime is hard but she does it out of love. She challenges me to be the best me, the best wife, the best mother, the best friend- that I can be with the guidance from God. She’s my mentor-friend.
As I am writing this, my list can actually go on and on of the women I call friends.Friends that I had as a kid that I reconnected with on Facebook, friends that helped me make it out of high school alive and happy, friends that I have mentored and now are peers and do life with together while raising our kids, friends that I met at church that inspire me to be a better me, friends that I met in grad school that are the only ones that really get the value of that piece of paper that we are still paying for and feels like we will be forever, that we call a Master Degree. I don’t like using the word “friend” lightly.
My friendships are the benefits!
Friendships are so valuable and priceless. I wouldn’t be the person that I am without them.
I used to be that girl in high school and college saying that I didn’t need female friendships. I was perfectly fine being “one of the guys.” In actuality, I was never seen as “one of the guys” as supposed to “which guy will she be dating.” Call that being young and dumb. In between my break-ups with my now husband, I would date those “friends.”
Thank goodness, I matured.
And of course, I married the best guy friend a girl could have.
So fast-forward 20+years, I started assessing my life, because who doesn’t when you hit your mid- 30’s! I looked at all the beautiful, Godly, strong, wise, bold, intelligent, spirit-filled, generous WOMEN that God placed in my life…and I became so grateful.
You see from the time I was a little girl, God strategically placed specific people that just appeared to be “friends” in my life to help protect me, help me to grow, helped to challenge me to be better and do better. Friendships are such a vital part of life. Being a wife and mother, I recognize the need for these relationships now more than ever.
These women that God has surrounded me with are my dear friends and they are full of benefits. The true benefit of each of these friendships is that they are a small, tangible example of the ultimate friend…God!
Having great friendships helps to form a sense of community, a sense of belonging. Friendship allows me to be a better wife and mother by having someone to seek advise or encouragement from. I am so glad that I didn’t discredit the value of friendship all of my life because I would have been missing out. The awesome thing is that I also get to model for my kids the life skill of how to be a friend.
Take a look at your friendships. Do those friends benefit you? Do you benefit them? With Valentine’s Day approaching, let your friends know how much they mean to you. If you feel that you don’t have friends. Please know that the best friendship you can ever have is with God.