|Posted by Mandy Young on August 19, 2012 at 10:35 PM|
Growing up I always had guy friends. I felt like girls were whiny, catty and honestly just too much drama. Guys are more laid back. You can fight about something and 10 mins later you're asking "what you want to grab for dinner". I've just always seemed to make easier friends with guys and when I had girlfriends it was because they were dating one of my guy friends.
In the last couple of years all of that has started to change. And I'm sure that's just apart of growing up. These girlfriends of my guy friends started to become wives. And not that I'm not friends with those guys anymore but relationships change. And I get that. A mans best friend, especially with the opposite sex, should be his wife. So I know I'm always going to take a back seat and I'm completely fine with that.
And in the last couple of years I've gotten more girlfriends; some married, some dating and some single. My friend Candace has always wanted me to get into a small group. Candace is also a speaker and while speaking at conferences she sometimes starts talking about small groups and how important that group of women are in her life. And about a year and a half ago a friend of mine started a small group and invited me to join. There were about 20 people invited to the first meeting. The girl who started the group was a friend of my sisters that I knew and had invited a bunch of her friends; a couple I knew but a lot more that I didn't. There were about 14 or 15 that came to the first meeting and week by week another would drop off until it came down to this group of 10 of us. We range of the ages of 25-32. Some are married with kids, some are married, and the a couple of us are single. We all have different kinds of jobs, we all go to different churches, we have all kinds of different back grounds and we all live pretty close to the same area but one thing we all have in common is that we love Jesus. I knew 3 of the girls really well (one being my sister, hehe); but the other girls I was either acquaintance with or I'd never met before.
In our first meeting we introduced ourselves and picked out a Bible study that we wanted to start. During the week we would do our homework and then every Tuesday night we would meet and do our group lesson/discussion and have prayer requests. Week by week was the same thing and when one study was over the next would begin. Each week our prayer request would get more personal and we'd start opening up a lot more. We have poured our hearts to each other. But then there have been times where we would take a week or two off and wouldn't meet and it was funny how those couple of weeks we would each feel like something was missing. It felt like our lives were throwing curve balls at us and we didn't know how to handle it because we hadn't been meeting. But then once we'd have that first meeting after not it seemed like our lives just seemed to fall back in to place.
Over the last year and a half we have laughed and cried together. We have celebrated and mourned together. We have grown so much together. It's amazing how God puts certain people in your life for a reason. I love seeing this group of girls in my life. He placed us there and it's amazing how when one of us is going through something another one of us had already been through it or is going through it too or helps you deal with it now and then when you go through it later she's there to help you. I know God knitted this group together and I love them so much! They are a huge part of my life! I look forward to seeing them and knowing that I'm going to see them every Tuesday! I always seem to tweet or Facebook about them on Tuesdays and express my love for them. Candace got so excited when she found out I was in a small group and said "Seeee now you understand what I've been talking about". And I do.
It's so important to have people from all different walks in your life. But as a Christian it's so important to have other believers around you. Not people that call themselves Christians and then turn around and do something dishonoring....but true Christians that are walking the walk and talking the talk. Now I'm not saying that these people are all perfect and I'm perfect yada yada yada, we are ALL human and we are going to make mistakes but I'm talking about people who are out there knowing sinning but call themselves Christians. I hate to sound so cheesy but you are who you hang around with. So if you are hanging around with those people then it's going to bring you down. You need to surround yourself with people who lift you up and make you want to be and continue to be a better person! And that's what these girls do for me! We hold each other accountable and we love each other for who God has made each one of us to be.
So I just want to encourage you if you aren't apart of a small group; get in one. If you don't know of one, start one; I am sure that you have girlfriends that would love to be apart of one. I honestly didn't realize how important these small groups were. We are helping each other learn more about Jesus, develop our walks with Him, helping each other through our daily lives, and making ourselves better people. Thank you Casey, Alex, Mallory, Morgane, Lauren, Meghan, Amber, Blair, Ashley, Ashlee, and Chelsea for loving me, encouraging me, laughing with me or being my shoulders to cry on. You've each helped me so much through the last year and a half and I love each and every one of you so much! I don't know what I'd do without you girls and I hope to never have to find out! God has put each one of you in my life for a reason and I'm so blessed to have you!