And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus... Colossians 3:17

Posts Tagged ‘friendship’

Write 31 Days Writing Challenge Day 1

Thursday, October 1st, 2015

What a challenge to Write 31 Days! A blog post a day for the 31 consecutive days of October.  Yikes! I’m not doing this alone either. There are over 1,000 writers tapping away daily for the next 31 days on many different topics.  Nine different theme categories for writers to share their passion for words. My writing category is Inspiration & Faith. The eight other categories allow writers lots of creative space.  Please take some time this month to connect with other writers as well.  I’ll share the link to where you can check them out at the end of this post.

I write a lot in my head. It’s safe there. No risk. But there’s no growth without change and no stretching without risk so I have to put my fingers to the keyboard and make it happen.

It has taken me several weeks to land on my theme. I considered what I love to talk with people about, figuring that would be an easy way to write. I thought about different ways to approach the one thing I can’t help but do when I’m talking: encouraging people.  I love to listen, hearing what’s going on in  someone’s life; specifically their spiritual life. I’ve decided to put these two things together.  Encouraging and listening. I’m going to write for 31 Days serving up encouragement to step forward in your life in 3 different ways: Getting to Know God; Soul Searching; and Serving Others. My series title? Living in Tandem.



Why that title? Well it’s a long story so I’ll tell you in pieces  over the next 31 posts!! Let me start by blaming my friend and mentor Peggy because she pointed out an area of my life that was in dire need of change…my attitude toward my husband. 18 years ago she told me I needed to get on the back of a tandem bike and learn to work out some attitude issues. I thought she was kidding but she persisted. Colin & I borrowed their tandem and rode it around their neighborhood.  I was petrified!  I couldn’t steer, I couldn’t brake or control the speed!  Colin was completely responsible for our very lives!!! My need for control, fears and lack of trust were activated 100% during that short turn around a couple of blocks. Colin had a great time.  I mean GREAT TIME!! When we got back to their driveway my heart was nearly jumping out of my throat and he had the giant little kid grin. He loved it and I was petrified.  That spoke volumes.

As much as I hated to admit I had such big issues to deal with, I had to agree with Peggy. I needed to work through some big things and the tandem bike was obviously a ‘fun for Colin’ option. We went tandem shopping that day, but it wasn’t until several weeks later, Father’s Day of 1997, that we got our first tandem bicycle. It has become a significant tool  God has used to grow & change me and, dare I say, shape me? Learning to live in tandem in all areas of my life has been (and continues to be) a journey of many miles.  Over the miles I’ve come to realize this metaphor isn’t simply about marriage.  I promise I won’t overwork the metaphor on a daily basis but I am really excited to share what I’ve learned along the Way. Most of all I’m excited to show you how these big ideas are for you too, even if you never get on the back of a literal tandem bicycle!

Obviously I would love to have you not only read my blog series but comment on what you read; letting me and others know how these words have encouraged you.  Or maybe how you take issue with what I’ve said.  Or perhaps you’ll have feedback on my writing style. I’m not the authority; I’m simply a fellow pilgrim moving through this life hoping to make positive impact on those I encounter.  Your feedback will be so helpful!

Will you join me on this ride?

Come back here to get caught up if you miss a post.  I’ll be using this as my landing page so each post will have a link to it’s page here and I’ll add it daily.  And here’s the link to the main page for Write 31 Days writing challenge where you can find other amazing writers sharing their various passions.

Day 2 Living in Tandem with Others

Day 3 Living in Tandem Requires Movement

Day 4 A Very Special Day

Day 5 A Good Road to Ride

Day 6 When a Soul Needs Quiet

Day 7 When Relationships Hit a Rough Patch

Day 8 The Push & Pull of Being a Control Freak

Day 9 Friday Funday!!

Day 10 What is Enough?

Day 11 The Basic Elements of Living in Tandem

Day 12 Who’s in Charge Here?

Day 13 What’s Your Why?

Day 14 Muscle Building (Learning to Trust)

Day 15 Trust Building

Day 16 Friday Funday!

Day 17 In Quietness & Trust

Day 18 Embracing Rest

Day 19 When Enthusiasm is AWOL

Day 20 A Change in Perception

Day 21 Living in Tandem Isn’t Flashy

Day 22 Rest for Your Soul

Day 23 Friday Funday!

Day 24 Saturday’s Soul Food

Day 25 Sabbath Listening

Day 26 Moving Forward by Being Still

Day 27 What’s in a Metaphor?

Day 28 Learning to Laugh

Day 29 Relationships are Better in Tandem

Day 30 Why Should Living in Tandem Matter to You?

Day 31 Finish Well

Stumble in the Right Direction

Tuesday, March 4th, 2014

sand footprints

I had the distinct privilege of talking on the phone this morning with a dear friend and prayer partner.  I call it a distinct privilege on purpose.  It’s always fun to talk with her; we laugh and I cry (I do that easily, ask anyone who knows me well) and we give and receive encouragement.  So why was today’s conversation a “distinct privilege”?

It was distinct: clear, certain, emphatic

She had some very specific clear communication for me as my dear friend.  She knows my heart and she knows my gifts/talents/skills and she knows where I am prone to fall.

She said clearly in response to my awareness of a need I would be skilled and experienced to fill: “that is a mud pit you don’t want to fall into.”



When I went on to share a bit about what I’ve been up to since we last spoke, she responded with more: “you are in a good place. You’re stumbling in the right direction.”

That statement caused me to grab a pen and write it on an envelope (the closest piece of paper at hand before I lost the words!)

Stumbling in the right direction.


We do stumble at times don’t we?  We want to make a change, or do a creative project, or make a new friend.  But things happen, sometimes out of our control and sometimes because of us.  The change is harder than we thought.  The project doesn’t work.  The person we hoped to be a new friend we discover isn’t really a good fit.


A stumble isn’t a fall.  There is hesitancy.  There is the recognition of fear of falling and of embarrassment.  But the motion of stumbling is usually moving you in the same direction you were originally going.

So stumbling in the right direction implies you were heading the right way in the first place.  Which of course begets the question:

Do you know where you’re heading?

It seems like I have been in the business of answering that question for 7 years!  But the process of coming to an answer has really been the evidence of ‘stumbling in the right direction.’  The fact that this process has taken me 7 years might say different things to different people, but for me the theme of these seven years has been clarity.

I have spent time asking God and family and friends, to help me find clarity. Help me see connections between experiences, talents, skills and gifts.  How best to make use of those connections.  I started a blog. Way back in 2007 when I turned 50!  This is actually my 3rd blog (the other two archives are connected here if you’re curious)

I became a Life Coach in 2009 as a connection of e.t.s.&g. (see above)  I love listening and asking questions of my clients, helping them connect the dots in their lives.

I am speaking to women in mentoring roles and in front of groups as opportunities present themselves.  I really love speaking encouragement to women!

I am writing. Not as much on paper as I have in my head to say but I am writing.  Especially in my journal. 

Through these actions I have gained clarity.  I know why I am here.  (at least at this moment!)

I found clarity in connecting a dot from a long time ago; so long ago, it was almost forgotten.  It is actually a question for all of us:

What is the chief end of man? (think humanity here)

To glorify God and enjoy Him forever.

Yeah yeah, grown up Sunday school answer right?  Not at all.

Sit with me here for a moment.

If all of my moments are given as a gift from God, then thanking Him for those moments brings Him glory.  He gets the credit. Not me.  So being thankful for even the hard, yucky stuff we all go through at one point or another, is half of the main purposewe are here.

The other half? It’s

linked to life itself—enjoying God forever.  Not in forever.  Right here.  Right now.  And it’s linked to thankfulness. 

In everything give thanks for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.


In my stumbling in the right direction, I stumbled upon an old maxim which is bedrock.  The first question in The Westminster Catechism.

Which brings me round to why I said my conversation with my friend this morning was a ‘distinct privilege’.  She is a gift of God to many.  Her friendship and wisdom is refreshing.  We all need people like this in our lives on as regular a basis as we can make time for.  And we all need to thank God for the privilege that true friendship really is. A distinct privilege.

Two things for you to consider:

Where are you heading?  Are you stumbling in the right direction?  Into the arms of a loving God who gives good and perfect gifts?


Who are the friends with whom you have the distinct privilege of relating?  How can you encourage them today?

Please share your thoughts; all your comments are moderated so if it’s too private for public reading, let me know and I won’t publish it here.  I’d love to hear from you!

30 Days of Giving #8: Laugh

Friday, November 8th, 2013

Gloucester Cathedral door The year I turned 50 was not a year full of reasons to laugh.  My life sounded a bit like a country song: my mom died, my dog died, my dad died. And my only brother and I stopped speaking. Blegh. Tim McGraw? Brad Paisley?

But someone understood exactly what I needed to do.  She not only brought a casserole, she gave me a reminder that I could look at daily.

laugh My dear friend Sue gave me the wood cut out for Christmas that year. She is one person who knows how to do that well.

Sue consistently points out both the light-hearted things in life and asks me to think about what God has to say on the subject.

Today Sue and her siblings and as much of the Moore family who could travel, gathered to honor the life of wife, mom, and grandma, the woman who never knew a stranger. Sue’s mom passed away in her sleep two weeks shy of her 95th birthday.  Now that’s a long life.  Betty Moore was generous, hospitable and loved to laugh.  All traits she passed down to her 5 children.

What a gift to give to the next generation: laughter.

Don’t take yourself too seriously.  Take time to laugh everyday.  Even better laugh at yourself.  If your anything like me there are humorous moments in everyday.

I’m sure there was laughter today hearing stories of family escapades. Remember the time…?

Sue If you haven’t already been reading Sue’s blog, you can find her encouraging and laughing at welcomeheart.  A shared recipe, a story well told and laughter.  Now that’s a good friend.


Confessions of a Recovering Control Freak

Friday, February 24th, 2012

I am challenged.  I know that may sound funny, and my family is probably saying, “Duh!” but what I mean to say is I am being challenged.  Challenged to stretch. grow. change.  And it’s not comfortable or easy.

True Confessions?  I am a recovering control freak.  I have mentioned that issue before so I won’t dive too far in.  Just far enough to admit it.  Here’s how.

I have had a skewed view of friendship.  I am happy to spend time with friends, listen to their stories, laugh with them, cry with them, take care of their children, live life.  But when my life gets busy, I put my head down and get busy, withdrawing from others, ignoring calls or letting texts drop.  Definitely not reaching out, sometimes not responding when an invitation would come my way.  In this way, I was controlling my friendships.  I was being a one way friend.  And in a way, I was controlling relationships.

That is not a friend.  A friend loves at all times.

When is all?  Oh yeah.  ALL.

I am challenged.  I want to be a better friend.  I want to reconnect, reach out, invite, participate.

Ann Voskamp and the team at (in)Courage are planning something big to help women like me be more intentional with friendships.  I suggest you take a look at their plans here.  Let me know how you’re being stretched and if you’re challenged like me.  And if you have called me your friend, and I haven’t acted like one, not only am I truly sorry but know that I am committed to change.  Of course that means more FUN!  And that’s the perfect thing for a Friday, right?


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