Read: Proverbs 17
Verse: 9 (NLT)
"Love prospers when a fault is forgiven, but dwelling on it separates close friends." (NLT)
"He who covers and forgives an offense seeks love, But he who repeats or gossips about a matter separates intimate friends." (AMP)
This verse is not new to me, nor is the concept. Love and forgiveness play a part in every relationship, or it should. I have made friends, lost friends, due to "seasonal" changes, or moving either physically or relationally.
I understand that we cannot do life alone and that friendships are a vital part of growing as a Christian. This past weekend, I did something that I have NEVER done before. I went to a conference by myself. I almost talked myself out it, because I decided to go to the (In) Real Life Friended Conference BY MYSELF. Who does that? The closer I got I thought "why am I doing this?" Shouldn't I be going with my friends since that's the title of it? Well, I felt like the Lord said, "go ahead, be brave, go alone and meet new people"!
So, I bought my tickets; Friday night add-on + Saturday conference + the boxed lunch. The Conference was sponsored by (In)Courage (which I read regularly) and Lifeway Women.
I won't give you a play by play of my whole experience there, but let's just say, I had an awesome adventure with Jesus! It was just what my heart needed, some extra time with Him! I made some new friends and met (and got pictures and autographs!) of some of my favorite authors and bloggers! We had fantastic worship by Meredith Andrews and talked about how to "encourage instead of compare", "how to go first in relationships", "how to disagree in a friendship", "how to weep AND rejoice in a relationship" and "how to survive a friendship breakup".
I came away with a deeper appreciation for my "close to home in real life friends" and also a deeper connection with the (In)Courage online community.
God truly led me to "love fully and live bravely" as I went way beyond my comfort zone and had the most amazing time that I will not soon forget!
What do you appreciate most about friendships?
Me with Kaitlyn Bouchillon (on the left-Holley's assistant)
and Holley Gerth (on the right). I was on
Holley's launch team for her new book "Fiercehearted".
My new friend Afton, from Chicago and
Lisa-Jo Baker. Lisa-Jo is a wonderful
speaker and so down to earth!
Chrystal Hurst, Priscilla Shirer's sister
and Dr. Tony Evans' daughter! I have never
heard her speak before. She was great!
Annie Downs! I LOVE listening to
her podcast on the way to work.
Fabulous speaker and author! She
even remembered I emailed her
a while back.