It’s incredibly humbling when I realize I CANNOT do life on my own. But let’s be honest…why would we want to?
I had the MOST AMAZING grandma—we called her Bushka Baby. Babushka means “old grandmother” in Russian. My Bushka said…”I’m NOT an OLD grandma!” Therefore, we called her Bushka BABY. That woman could put a smile on the Grinch (pre-heart growth) on his worst day ever! She was the life of the party. She cared about everyone…especially her family. I always felt like I was HOME when we visited her in Iowa at her little yellow house with butterflies on the siding. When I was a sophomore in college, she got really sick. I still remember the dreaded phone call. As her condition worsened, I called her to tell her goodbye because I didn’t think I was going to make it up there in time to say it face-to-face. During this call, she said, “I’m ready to see Jesus. I talked to Him and He says that He will take even me…” and then she went on to say, “Have a great life, my precious girl.” After we talked, I fell to my knees. I burst into tears. My heart was broken. Two of my closest friends in college surrounded me, prayed over me, hugged me, and encouraged me. We ran to Jesus together. Even after she passed away, they were there. They continued to encourage me as I dealt with the grief. I cherish those memories. Jesus used those friends to give me strength. Strength I couldn’t muster.
Fast forward to July of this year. I had a particularly busy day preparing for some visitors for the weekend. I had a to-do list a mile long and of all days, Liam wanted nothing more than to be held. All day. I really did want to hold him the whole day, but I also needed to get the house vacuumed…just vacuumed! I would love to say the stress didn’t get the best of me, but I would be lying. I text one of my girlfriends and asked if she had a bit of time to come hold him just so I could vacuum. She was there more quickly than I could get the words out! She rocked him while I vacuumed…then an amazing thing happened….I GOT TO TAKE A SHOWER. Not only a shower, but I also got to SHAVE my LEGS! WOW. For a new mother, this is a big deal! I soaked it in (literally). Not only has that friend saved me in moments like that, but she has also encouraged me throughout my journey with postpartum depression. Jesus has used her to give me strength. Strength I couldn’t muster on my own.
The Lord intends for us to have people around us to encourage us and for us to encourage. Galatians 6:2 says, “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.” We were made with the inward desire for community. We need each other! When the world around us crumbles, when we’re just having a bad day, or when our mascara falls into the toilet for the 8th time, we need our girlfriends!
“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 (NIV)
Don’t just sit around waiting for someone to come encourage you. Take some time to encourage your friends today. No matter how small you may think the gesture, it may just speak volumes in someone else’s world. Where would I be without my friends? Definitely a little less sane and definitely with too few laugh lines!