A friend loves at all times… Proverbs 17:17
In the spring of 1999, a group of women were instructed to find a partner among the forty women in the room. From across the room, two women locked eyes and navigated the sea of others to become partners in the exercise. And became best friends. Almost twenty years later, their friendship is deeper as they have shared the best and worst of times.
One the best parts of womanhood is the depth of my friendships with other women. Whether they are younger or older than me, I cherish my women friends in a way that I could never have imagined.
Both my mother and her mother modeled this, but I didn’t get it at the time. My grandmother was a member of a group of women affectionately called the “meet to eat” group. Their meetings surely had a deeper purpose than that, but what they are most remembered for is the food they prepared for their gatherings.I’m pretty sure I learned how to deep clean a house from my grandmother as she prepared for club meeting. Her home would have passed the white glove test each and every time. And without a paid cleaning service. We washed down walls and scrubbed baseboards as well as taking the blinds down and washing them in the bathtub. And yes, we did do windows, inside and out.
My mom is a member of The Group. These women have been together for almost fifty years playing pinochle once a month. They have raised children together. Suffered through illness, death and divorce together. Hosted bridal and baby showers for their children.
In the beginning, their meetings took place on Friday nights and include adult beverages. As the years have passed, they moved to meeting at lunch time during the week. They still meet in one another’s homes and there may or may not be adult beverages and paid cleaning services involved. They are in their 70’s after all.
What has meant the most to me in witnessing these women over the years, has been how they have cared for and loved each other. They have also spoken into my life and the lives of their other children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. They have offered solace and words of wisdom at just the right times.
As for the two women who met in the spring of 1999, that would be me and my best friend, Barvette. Although we aren’t part of a formal club, we have girlfriends that get together periodically to encourage, hold each other accountable and pray. Best of all we laugh deep, deep belly laughs. We pour into each other and into our children just as my mom and grandmother did.
My husband has great friends, too, and they do hold one another accountable. I’m sure they spend a fair amount of time laughing and encouraging each other as well. But, I cannot imagine they share the depth of love that my sisterfriends and I share with each other. There is just nothing quite like it.
The enemy would love nothing more than to keep us alone and isolated. But, God intends for us to be in relationship with others while we are here on this side of eternity.
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. Furthermore, if two lie down together they keep warm, but how can one be warm alone? And if one can overpower him who is alone, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not quickly torn apart.
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Hey there friend! Andrea McCaskey here. I believe everything happens for a reason, life is meant to be lived in relationship with others and there is beauty to be found everywhere if we look. I am a friend of God, wife of Jamal and mother of Brandon and Madison.
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