Sunday, April 5, 2009

Girlfriend Getaway

I am blessed to have a number of amazing women in my life. Of course I must mention my mother and my sisters here as they are the amazing women that I have known the longest. I also still keep in touch with my nearly 40-year friend Mishell. My relationships with them are incredibly important to me, but sadly, I don't get to spend quality time with them as often as I'd like.

I have been so fortunate through the paths of my life that I have had women friends who, for a season, have had great influence on me and I have had especially meaningful relationship with. Six years ago I met my friend Gail, who at the time was my job share partner. I also soon discovered she was my neighbor. She became my support system as I went through cancer treatment. We became prayer partners, confidants, counselors. Our husbands became friends. Her kids are like my own. We have shared countless adventures, including a ten-day Maui getaway, Thanksgiving at Fairmont, Canada, and a camping trip to the St. Joe River. This friendship was unexpected and God-ordained. It blesses me every day.

My friendship with Gail has also included sharing other friends that on our own, we would have likely not crossed paths with. As I have gotten to know Gail's circle of friends, I have come to appreciate the godly, fun-loving, warm, transparent people they are. Over time they have allowed me to infiltrate their circle and have embraced me as not just Gail's friend, but their friend as well. I have laughed with them, cried with them, shared experiences, feelings, beliefs.

This weekend we took part in a girlfriends' getaway to The Inn at the Lake near Newport, WA. This group lives and loves to have fun and that's what we did. We traveled to Sand Point, ID for lunch and shopping, then settled into the beautiful Bed and Breakfast on Diamond Lake. We took over the lower level of this immense house, enjoyed the lovely rooms and warm hospitality. From time to time, we reflected on some of the harder things some of us are going through. But mostly it was a time of great conversation, delighting in the fact that God gives us friends.

I am so thankful that God taught us to be in relationship. Life would be really hard without it. Sometimes relationships are hard, too, but they are worth any pain involved. Now that our little getaway is over, I am left feeling deeply satisfied and blessed. And I crave more opportunities for those relationships to flourish. Here's to spending quality time with the people God placed in my life. It's sooo much better than trying to do life alone.


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