I have been blessed with good friends in my life. Friends from all walks of life, some friends have known me forever and some I'm still getting to know, friends who know and relate to me in different areas, friends who understand and support me in their own unique ways. God has really put some special people in my life. I am so thankful to have friends and family that I can talk to about just about anything. But as I am well into this phase of my life where I'm challenged daily to be the wife and mother that God intends me to be I have been struggling more and more. I am finding that I need to make a conscious effort to be around other women in this phase of life as well so I don't feel so isolated, realize I'm not alone in my struggles, I can give and receive encouragement. God intends for us to lean on Him first and foremost but also to lean on one another.
"God comforts us in all of our troubles so that we can comfort others in their troubles." 2 Corinthians 1:4
Also, at the retreat last weekend we talked about loving our neighbor and witnessing to and encouraging our non-Christian friends to come to church, etc. Well, I felt a little convicted since I really don't have very many non-believing friends right now. Its been awhile since I was in the workplace and being a stay at home mom makes it hard to socialize sometimes, you know? But there isn't an exemption for us SAHMs. God wants His Word to be evident to other in how they see us live our lives. If the only people who see us are believers than what a waste. We - I need to be interacting with non-believers in my daily life.
"You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven." Matthew 5:13-16
"But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." Acts 1:8
Anyway, I figured, I could keep making excuses for myself or I could do something. So, for now I've done two things that are both stepping outside of my normal comfort zone: I have set up a regular time to meet with a sister-in-Christ who is also a mom of two little ones to talk and pray for one another - I'm really excited to see our relationship grow. And I found a play group in town that has all sorts of activities through out the month (daytime, evening - you name it) at various places around town (anywhere from McDonald's playland to Children's museum trips, etc), play dates and mommy only outings. I'm actually excited to go and meet some other moms and make some new friends. I think any stay-at-home mother of toddlers will agree that regardless of the reason, just getting out of the house for some adult conversation sounds pretty good!
** I found the photos on flickr.com and both are linked to their original home on the web