The Macs

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

dayspring {coupon update}

Save 30% with the Biggest Coupon of the Year

One more thing...

I just found out that DaySpring is having their Super Sale right now.
If you already found something you can't live without,
you can get 30% off your entire order.
Use coupon code SUPER30 during checkout to receive 30% off everything, 
including items already discounted.
Valid only through Tuesday, November 30th.

This coupon expires tonight!

* * * *

To enter the DaySpring $50 giveaway leave a comment on this post.

dayspring gifts {a giveaway}

Do you have your Christmas shopping done?
Don't tell me if you do, because that would be way too efficient of you.
My sister and sisters-in-law all joined the Black Friday crazies this weekend.
Though they were lacking in sleep, they did score some pretty good deals.
I decided to stay home this year and hang out with Levi.
My sister did get me some Gap jeans for fifty percent off.
She is really sweet like that.

Anyway, if you are like me and still have some a lot of shopping to do... 
you will be glad you stopped by today.
Remember those Hope and Encouragement cards I posted about?

Hope and  Encouragement 2011 - 10 Premium Greeting Card Assortment
I LOVE them.
It is great to have a whole stack of meaningful cards
 to send to friends when they are needing a little encouragement.
The messages inside each one are perfect.

After I told you about the Hope and Encouragement Cards
DaySpring sent me a few other fun things to share with you.
How fun to get a big box of goodies in the mail!

This caddy would be great for Christmas parties.
Mine is ready for desserts and coffee.
{Come on over friends!} 
I filled it with polka dot napkins and coffee spoons. 
But, there are so many ways you could use this caddy!

The plaque on the front says:
Give thanks to the Lord for His unfailing love.
Psalm 107:8

I think this caddy would be the perfect gift 
for someone who loves to entertain. 
You could even fill it up with napkins and utensils 
and they would be ready for their next party!

I also love these colorful plates from DaySpring's Life Collection.
I have big plans for these little plates.
Like filling them with ornaments and wrapping them with 
clear wrap and a big red ribbon...
or filling them with Christmas cookies,
or maybe a big chocolate covered caramel apple.

These would be the perfect teacher gift or gift for your neighbors.
And the best part is when they get to the bottom of the plate,
there is the sweet message of "life".
A reminder of the life God has given us through the precious gift of His Son.

Did you notice my new cards?
I think I love these just as much as the Hope and Encouragement cards.
This is the Colors of Compassion assortment.
If you know someone who loves to send cards,
this would be a great gift for them.

The best part is that when you purchase these cards,
DaySpring will donate 6% of net wholesale sales directly to 
Compassion International to help provide immunizations and 
other urgent medical care to children in need.
Isn't that great!?!
And even better...the Colors of Compassion cards are on sale right now...
the Hope and Encouragement cards are on sale too!

Do you need a few more ideas?
Check these out...

There are so many beautiful things to choose from.
I hope you have a list made out because DaySpring is offering one of my readers a
 $50.00 gift certificate to use in their online store!

Giveaway Details:

$50 to DaySpring

ONE winner chosen at random

One entry per person

Giveaway ends Friday, December 3 at 10pm (CST)

To enter visit DaySpring... 
then come back here and leave a comment
telling me what you would buy with your gift certificate.

This post is part of DaySpring's affiliate program.

Monday, November 29, 2010

thanksgiving {2010}

Our Thanksgiving

getting ready for the big day

a hug for mama

gotta love a good sister-in-law

nice yams Rachel

quality time with Uncle Loren

tasty turkey

the two middle children
(they think they are the favorites!)

the feast

grandpa and grandma

words with friends break

me and the hubby

silly Tripp

the family photo

just the grandkids

Levi slept through most of his first Thanksgiving...

but he still thought the turkey was pretty great!

Thanksgiving was really hard for me again this year.
I have been struggling with a lot of emotions...
missing Cora,
my parents moving,
and having to let go of things that I don't want to let go of.
But, I can't help but smile when I look back at these pictures of my family.
I have so much to be thankful for.

I hope that this weekend you were able to thank God for who He is,
even if approaching the holidays has been difficult for you.
He is so worthy of our thanksgiving.

Can you believe that November is almost over?
Come back tomorrow for a giveaway!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

a thankful heart

Today my heart is thankful...

For a sweet daughter who's short little life forever changed me.
Because of her I am clinging to Jesus in a way that I never have before.
My perspectives and priorities are changed and I am so grateful for that.
I am missing Cora so much today.

For a little boy who is full of life.
Because of him my days are filled with being a mom.
My house is noisy and busy...and I love that.
Levi is so fun and every day with him is a blessing.

For a husband who loves me unconditionally.
Because of him I can stay home with my babies - my dream job.
He makes me feel like an awesome mom and beautiful wife...
even on days that I am not.
I love raising a family and walking through life with Joel.

This week at Bible study I was really challenged by this:
How much do I enjoy God Himself apart from His blessing?

My life is full of blessings. 
I could go on and on about the many things I am thankful for. 
But, am I truly enjoying God Himself...apart from those blessings?
He has already given me more than I could have ever ask or imagine 
through the gift of His Son, Jesus. 
He has already met my greatest need. 
And I can be completely satisfied in Him. 

That is what I am most thankful for today. 
I am thankful that He is enough. 
I am thankful that He is all I need.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

advent calendars

I have been thinking a lot about Advent calendars and Christmas traditions as December is quickly approaching. What traditions do Joel and I want to pass on to our kids that we grew up with? What new traditions would we like to start with our family? Levi won't be able to do very much this year, but we still want to be intentional with him. We want Levi to understand that only Jesus matters...He is the reason we celebrate Christmas.

Do you use an Advent calendar with your kids as you anticipate Christmas?

How do you help your kids understand that only Jesus matters?

Monday, November 22, 2010

levi {hearts} rocks

The weather in Kansas has been beautiful this fall.
So, Levi and I have been spending lots of time outside.
He loves to be outside.
He has even started crying when we have to go back in the house.

We go on a lot of walks,
but Levi likes it best when I just let him explore.
He is so curious.

This weekend he discovered the rock driveway at the end of the sidewalk.
I don't think he knew it was there before.
He thought it was EVERYWHERE.

After digging about twenty little rocks out of his mouth,
(he is sneaky and fast!)
I finally compromised and let him suck on a big rock that he couldn't swallow.

I carried him back to the grass
and five minutes seconds later he was back to the driveway.
He always found his way back to the rocks.

I could barely take his picture
because when I did he would sneak another rock in his mouth.

I found out this weekend that Levi has a new love.
Levi {hearts} rocks.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

that cozy-warm feeling

You know that cozy-warm feeling you get when it starts getting cold outside? You want to pull out your sweaters and throw on a scarf as you walk out the door. You want to sit by a crackling fire in the evenings and snuggle under a blanket...or turn on the space heater if you don't have a fireplace like me! You want to bake something or sip a warm drink. You can't wait to pull out the Christmas decorations and the excitement of the holidays starts setting in.

It is starting to feel like winter around here. We even had a few snowflakes falling in Kansas yesterday. And today I am having that cozy-warm feeling. But not because of the weather or the sweater I wore this morning. This cozy-warm feeling is because of a group of ladies who were such an encouragement to me this morning.

About three weeks ago I was sharing with someone how I really felt like God was asking me to be faithful to share my story. I wasn't sure what that looked like, but I knew that I needed to be obedient. Remember this prayer I shared with you a few weeks ago?

I too pray that as long as I have breath I would be faithful to use Cora's story for His glory, that I wouldn't stop asking Him to bring forth the fruit that He desires from her short little life.

That really is my desire and I want to be faithful even if it is uncomfortable for me. Guess what? The next day I received an e-mail from Stephanie asking if I would be willing to share with her Bible study three weeks. Yikes! Three weeks meant not very much time to prepare. And this time it was a small group. A small group of women I had never met before. I would be sitting at a table amongst them, not standing at a podium with my notes. I could have come up with a thousand excuses why I shouldn't do it, but I felt that nudge telling me I needed to be obedient. Even if it meant stepping out of my comfort zone again.

So this morning I hopped into my car and put the church address in my phone to get directions. I got to my destination and could tell that I was totally in the wrong place. I only had five minutes before I was supposed to be there. I had communicated with Stephanie over e-mail and didn't even think to ask for her phone number in case I got lost. I was starting to feel nervous and I hadn't even started talking yet! Fifteen minutes later I figured out how to get there (yes, I am directionally challenged) and I quickly prayed in the parking lot that the Lord would still use me to speak His truth even though I was late and frazzled.

What a blessing to be a part of that Bible study this morning. The ladies were still giving announcements when I walked in and they were so gracious to me. I shared my story and what God had been teaching me and then they asked me questions. Through interacting with them I got to hear some of their stories and what God had been doing in their lives. These women had such a desire to know God deeply. So cool.

After the Bible study Kristy offered to take me out to lunch. She has been following my blog since Cora got sick, but I had never met her before. I loved our time together. She shared her heart so openly with me and I left feeling encouraged and challenged. Thanks Kristy!

Don't you love that? You go somewhere hoping that you can be a blessing to those around you and you leave feeling like you were the one who was blessed.

That's how I feel today.
I just have that cozy-warm feeling.

Monday, November 15, 2010

monday morning

We had a great weekend.
A rainy Friday meant Joel got to take Saturday afternoon off.
Yeah for an afternoon at home together!
We haven't had one in a long time.
We watched a movie, 
played with Levi,
ate pizza for dinner,
took naps {all three of us},
put together our Operation Christmas Child boxes,
went to church,
ate lunch with friends,
and spent Sunday evening with some new friends 
that we met through Judgement House.
It was great.

* * *

This morning Levi and I have been doing the normal Monday morning things...
along with some tractor driving.
I can't believe how much Levi likes cars and tractors.
How does he know to "drive" them?

He gets on his hands and knees...

and drives...

and drives...

and drives...

all over the house.
Boys are so fun.

* * *

I loved being able to introduce you to some of my friends last week.
I hope you learned as much about friendship as I did.
I was definitely challenged.
I have some incredible friends,
but I hope you didn't go away from those posts 
thinking that my friendships are perfect.
I struggle with the same things that everyone else does...
My friendships have changed with the different seasons in my life.
And loosing Cora changed and challenged my friendships too.
I love what Julie said,
"The things I long for in a best friend,
is what God is for me."
I can pour out my heart to Him.
Nothing will ever change the way God feels about me.
He delights in me.
He delights in you.
What a friend we have in Jesus.

Here are the Friendship for Grown-Ups winners:
Stacy Brady
Debbie @ My2Blessings
Candy @ Mim and Company
Andrea @ Meanderings of Andrea

Congrats ladies! 
E-mail me your address and I will get your book sent off this week.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

thoughts on friendship {lindsay}

Meet my friend Lindsay (she is in the yellow sweatshirt). I met Lindsay at church almost four years ago. We had an instant bond because she and her husband were Kansas State grads...just like me and Joel. You know it is going to be a good friendship when a love for the Wildcats is involved! Lindsay and I don't get to hang out a lot, but we have had some good times going to craft weekends, sewing pillowcases, and running races together. Oh, and Lindsay was the one who e-mailed me to say that she would be my "no pop" accountability partner. She is really sweet like that.

Two things that come to mind when I think of Lindsay are joy and honesty. This girl knows how to have fun...wherever she is, whatever she is doing. She brings joy to a room and usually lots of laughter too. You never have to wonder what Lindsay is thinking. She is honest through and through and I love that about her. I feel very blessed to have a fun friend like Lindsay in my life. Here are Lindsay's thoughts on friendship...

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

In my processing of the book, Friendship for Grown-ups, I did what I always do when I am spurred on to thinking about things, I sat down with my friends and we talked. Then, I Googled it.

I found this quote from The Four Loves, by C.S. Lewis. “Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art…It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things that give value to survival.”

I love it. I like how he acknowledges that we can make it through life without friendship, but that the life would be a pretty sad one. The value comes from living life with a friend.

Lisa Whelchel closed out her book with the idea that God is with us. Not just near us. Not just around. But seriously with us, in us. “Jesus didn’t stay in his own heavenly world. He stepped into ours to be fully present, all there 100 percent with us.”

I love that the God who created us, knows us well enough to know we would need a visual. He knew we would ask, “What do you mean with us?” Well, it turns out He sent Christ to be with us. And thankfully, Christ is actually here, in my heart, every day, and He desires more than anything to walk this life with me - to be my true friend.

“…and surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:20.

So if friendship adds value to life and if Christ’s picture of friendship is being with us…then I need to ask myself, how am I adding value to my friends’ lives and how am I being with them?

Luckily, I have wonderful friends, who go out of their way to make me feel like they are with me and adding value to my life. They are great examples. This week I was overwhelmed by their example of friendship to me, so I thought I would share them so you could try them out next time you want to be with someone.

• One friend emailed and said “I know you are a little overwhelmed, my hubby and I would like to bring you a meal this week.”
• Another friend gave me the perfect birthday gift – she remembered something from a particular shopping trip and went back to get it.
• In response to my really stinky day at work, several friends sent me affirming notes telling me they love me and they prayed for me.
• Two friends, who happen to be out of the country over my birthday, remembered my birthday and sent me special messages.

I would love to know a few ways that you are truly with your friends or how you work to add value to their life. Please share!

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Great thoughts Lindsay! So, will you brainstorm with us? What are some ways that we can be with our friends?

Would you like to win a copy of Friendship for Grown-ups? Don't forget to leave a comment on Monday's post to enter the giveaway. Today is the last day to enter. I hope you have enjoyed this series on friendship.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

thoughts on friendship {kendall}

Meet Kendall (pictured on the far right). I met Kendall six years ago at my first teaching job. I was teaching Kindergarten and she was teaching third grade. We found out we went to the same church and slowly began developing a friendship. About a year later my husband and I were so blessed to be in a small group with Kendall and her husband. That is when our friendship really grew. I have many found memories with Kendall during that newly married, before kids stage. Those were the days of stopping by randomly, going to concerts, taking a weekend trip, and not worrying about getting home before bedtime. Now our time together usually involves holding babies and kids running around our feet. It is fun being able to experience these different phases of life together.

Kendall has such a kind and compassionate spirit about her. She is very of those friends you know you can stop by their house anytime. She would welcome anyone into her home. And Kendall has such a big heart for the world. She is so faithful to pray that the Lord would use her and her family to reach others. I'm pretty sure she would drop everything and move to Africa to run an orphanage if she could. Who knows, maybe one of these days God will open the doors for her to do just that! Kendall shares how God has been working on her heart regarding friendships...

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

I am SO glad I had the chance to read this book. I couldn't put Friendship for Grown-ups down! Not only was it easy to read, but it really resonated with me. Friendships--deep, intimate friendships--are something that I have struggled with. It's something that God has been working on in my heart this last year or so--and this book was so timely.

I think what I appreciated most was Lisa's honest reflections and experiences. It was good to learn that this (struggling to grow and maintain good relationships) is normal--but that at the same time, friendships--deep, lasting, intimate female friends--are SO worth the time and effort. As women, we are made for relationships. That's one of the ways we grow, process life and relieve stress!

Lisa’s struggles have allowed her to learn many things about friends. Thankfully, she shared practical ways to grow and maintain beautiful friendships--even for a busy mom and wife! Many pieces of advice were so helpful for me:

*"Not All Friendships Should be the Same"—I realized that it’s okay to have some REALLY close friends, and many not-quite-as-close friends. There are different levels of intimacy AND different connections with each friend. I felt tremendous freedom to find and enjoy friends more for who they are—instead of feeling like my relationships should look just so.

*Practical ways to give and receive—I loved reading some of Lisa’s personal emails and texts. It reminded me that, especially for this busy time in my life (with little kids) I won’t have long hours over coffee each week with a friend. But a simple email, phone call, card or text ARE meaningful, too. I’ve tried to do more of that since reading the book.

*Conflict can be a GOOD thing.--I know this is true because I’ve lived it. It’s HOW you handle the conflict that makes a difference. In reading this book, and in my own journey this past year, I’ve realized that, in times of (real or perceived) conflict, I can avoid the person…or I can pursue them. I can work to resolve the issue and deepen the friendship. I hate conflict with friends—but even more, I hate the lonely feeling of NOT having intimacy. This book reminds me to continue to pursue that. The friendships are worth the effort!

I would definitely recommend this book. If you've ever felt lonely, (even though you have friends!) or wish that you could reach deeper intimacy in your friendships...this is a super book to read to begin that journey. Better yet--read it WITH your friends! What a great way to start that conversation!

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Thanks Kendall! I love the list of practical things we can do to maintain healthy friendships. What are some practical things you do to keep up with your friends during the busy season of life with kids?

Would you like to win a copy of Friendship for Grown-ups? Don't forget to leave a comment on Monday's post to enter the giveaway. 

Friday, November 12, 2010

thoughts on friendship {julie f}

Meet my friend Julie F. (pictured on the far right). I met Julie at church when she moved to Kansas a little over three years ago. Julie just became a new mama. I was pretty excited when her little boy was born. Levi needed some boys to hang out with in the church nursery. Her little man is trying really hard to catch up with Levi in weight...he is a BIG boy too. Julie and I are a part of the same Young Family Sunday School class and mom's group at church. Unfortunately our paths don't cross much outside of church, but I always love the times when we get to hang out together. And her husband makes amazing Japanese food. Yum!

Julie is the kind of friend that no matter how close of a relationship you have with her she always makes you feel special. She is an amazing listener. You always feel like what you are talking to her about is important...even if it really isn't. Julie is also very wise. Whenever she talks, you listen. She makes you think. Julie's deep love for the Lord is so evident in her relationships and how she interacts with people. Here is what Julie has to say about friendship...

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * 

When Jess asked me to read Friendship for Grown-Ups I was a little hesitant. You see, I had just had my first baby six weeks earlier and I felt so overwhelmed. I wasn’t sure I could find the time to read a book and gather my thoughts in any cohesive manner (though I’m not promising this is cohesive). Yet, I was intrigued by the topic of the book. I have not read any books about friendship and it struck a heartstring with a current question I have. Part of the adjustment to my life as a new mom is the balance between the more ‘inward’ focus I both want and need to take on to take care of my family and the strong desire I also have for ‘outward’ focus—in this case for deep, intimate friendships. I am learning the necessary changes I need to make in the way I ‘do’ friendship in this phase of motherhood and decided to read this book for any thoughts the author might have.

Thankfully, Friendship for Grown-Ups is such an easy read! Almost immediately, it drew me in through the way Lisa Whelchel writes. Her voice shines through her words and the way she tells her journey of learning friendship is like a having a conversation over coffee. I enjoyed that. It felt like a friend telling me her struggles while giving advice so I won’t stumble in the same ways she did. In that way, the ‘instructional’ aspects of the book felt less forceful and more like gracious guidance.

One of my favorite parts of the book is that Lisa is adamantly promoting friendship. She affirmed my need to be loved and accepted for who I am and reminded me “it’s okay to be needy”. That’s how God created us. He wants us to be able to be real and intimate with other women. He wants us to love and be loved unconditionally. He wants us to know that we don’t have to “do” the right thing or “be” the right person to earn our closest friends.

This book also reminded me that what I long for in a best friend is what God is for me. He wants me to be intimate with Him, to love Him deeply, and to know I have to do nothing to earn his unconditional love for me. I so desire to have that relationship with God, to be daily desperate for Him and His love, to fully understand His grace. Lisa encourages me with the thought that God places friends in my life to be a good—yet not perfect—picture of His faithful love. She says:

“Friends help us find our way there. I can’t imagine walking into the throne room of grace if I had not been first welcomed into the hearts of grace of my friends. I know that faith is believing in what we can’t see, but I’m grateful that God knows that we sometimes need a little glimpse in order to have a little faith. Friends have been the visible manifestation to me of God’s grace.”

I tend to like ‘the answer’ to what I am struggling with. This book did not give ‘the answer’ to making or maintaining friendships. But, I walk away knowing that I want to continue to intentionally pursue deep, vulnerable friendships where grace and love is both given and taken.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * 

I'm with you, Julie. I like to have 'the answer' too. I love what Julie reminded us about God. What I long for in a best friend is what God is for me. So true.

Would you like to win a copy of Friendship for Grown-ups? Don't forget to leave a comment on Monday's post to enter the giveaway.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

thoughts on friendship {laura}

Meet my friend Laura. I met Laura in fourth grade and by fifth grade we were inseparable. We did everything together and when we couldn't be together we were probably talking on the phone. We even had BFF necklaces. Awesome. When my family moved at the end of my seventh grade year, the worst part was leaving Laura. Our parents were so kind and allowed us to see each other whenever possible even though we lived ten hours apart. Somehow I talked Laura into coming to Kansas for college. It was awesome living so close again. She got to know Joel and even helped him plan our engagement. She was also one of my bridesmaids. Laura survived two years in Kansas (she always says she hates Kansas--particularly the weather--but loves the people here) and then moved back to Colorado (I don't blame her). It is a good thing she did, because when she moved back home she met her sweet husband. Despite the distance I will always consider Laura to be one of my best friends.

In Friendship for Grown-ups, Lisa talks about how not all relationships will be the same. Some relationships have history--that is my relationship with Laura. Our friendship has history. Laura and I get each other. I have known her for almost twenty years. We grew up together. We love each others families like our own. We don't get to see each other often, but every time we are together it is like I just saw her yesterday. Our husbands love each other too which is a definite bonus! We have been through many joys and much heartache together and I can tell you from experience, that if I needed her, Laura would jump into her car and drive to Kansas to be by my side.

Laura is the most relational person I have ever met. The way she instantly connects with people and makes them feel comfortable is amazing. She shows incredible empathy towards others--a shining light of Christ's love to those around her. She is honest and funny. I know if you met her today you would instantly want to be her friend too. Here is what Laura had to say about friendship...

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

When I was first approached by Jess to read FRIENDSHIP for GROWN-UPS I secretly wanted to say, “No thanks.” I’m not a reader. To be completely honest, I read on average about one book every 3 years. I start to read dozens but never seem to finish any of them. I guess that is what made this book different. I knew there was an end goal and that I would be reading along with friends and that I had to follow through. It sounded fun and I knew I would be able to glean something that I could apply to my friendships today. As I read the book, I realized it was an “easy read” and that made it all the more enjoyable.

My review of this book isn’t going to be glamorous but it will be honest and to the point. That’s how I roll. To put it simply, I learned 3 main things from this book.

1. Working in Hollywood can really mess you up.
2. I’m not sure I would have been a “true friend” to Lisa Whelchel when she needed one most.
3. The drama surrounding many of her friendships exhausted me.

While I am being a bit sarcastic, I do think that this book brought to light how truly blessed I have been in the area of friendship. I felt so sorry for Lisa as I read many of her stories about those that had let her down, the heart ache that she endured during her years in Hollywood, and her inability to truly connect with a best friend. I was encouraged that through her pain she was able to connect most importantly with the Lord and that through her trials she grew to be a better friend herself and recognized what qualities to look for in a true friend.

To be brutally honest, I could not relate to most of what Lisa went through on her journey to grown-up friendships. Her story looks completely different than mine…her struggles and victories in friendship much more intense. BUT, there were many little gold nuggets that I was encouraged and challenged by. Things I think we can all take away and use to improve our friendships…

I loved an e-mail that Lisa shared from one of her friends and was challenged by what it said…

“Oh, my friend, you are safe. That you can count on. No matter how long our friendship lasts, no matter how deep or shallow it ebbs and flows…I will be faithful to never disclose what you’ve entrusted me with, and I will remain loyal to God through the way I befriend you. Just relax, cry for the right reasons, and keep your trust in God higher than your trust in people, and all will be well!”

Wow. What great perspective. I pray that I can be a safe friend. A friend that is faithful to honor and respect all that is shared. A friend that is loyal ultimately to God and trusts HIM for the friendships in my life.

While I am blessed with many wonderful friends, some of my closest friends are a long ways away. Many miles separate us but those friendships feed my soul and encourage my heart. Lisa wisely wrote, “If you don’t intentionally nurture your friendships and invest time in them, they too easily dwindle away in the press of life.”

In this busy season of being a wife, raising children, and caring for a home (to name a few!) it’s easy to put friendships towards the bottom of the list…but when we do that we lose out on the amazing connection, encouragement, and comradery that we can have with one another.

My friendships, for the most part, have been easy…
and I have been incredibly blessed.

But for those that haven’t had the same experience and for those that need a gentle reminder (me!) this book will encourage you to be more merciful, faithful, and full of grace in all of the relationships that are important to you.

We can all grow and be better friends…and we can also thank the Lord a lot more often for those that have been friends to us…and have touched our lives so deeply.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Thanks Laura! I love how she brought up being a safe friend. Am I loose-lipped, judgmental, petty, negative or condescending? Or do I look for the best in people, give them the benefit of the doubt, and don't join in when others gossip or gang up on a person who is not present? Wow. That's challenging. Are you a safe friend?

Would you like to win a copy of Friendship for Grown-ups? Don't forget to leave a comment on Monday's post to enter the giveaway.