Hey pals. You’re so great.
Galentine’s Day just passed and I was overwhelmed at the amount of love I felt through cards, cookies, and all the other ways you just love me so well on a daily basis.
The thing is, you don’t save this for one day a year. You people love well 365 freakin’ days a year. So here we are, on a random Friday in February, because it doesn’t have to be a national (or not even national) holiday for me to recognize your amazingness.
Leslie Knope (on Parks and Rec) is one of the most empowering and encouraging friends ever. She straight up adores Ann Perkins, her BFF. There isn’t a day where she doesn’t have some kind of weirdo compliment to remind Ann how great she is.
So one of my friends is a super talented cookie baker/decorator. She sends them to me for free, but some day I will pay her to make them for my wedding (did you get that, LP?). I received a box of Parks & Recreation themed cookies in honor of Galentine’s Day and lady-friendship. And I thought to myself, How awesome is it that this sweet friend uses her talents and passions (yes, you can be passionate about dessert) to honor and love her friends well? That is living into our calling. That is embracing the giftings God has given us and using them for His glory.
Seriously though, making cookies and mailing them from Florida to Colorado and having them still look and taste amazing is a SKILL. And my friend uses her skill to make me feel loved.
I have other friends who make cards like these:
I KNOW. I’ll stop bragging now. But I feel like since I don’t post #hubby or #baby or #puppy pics, that I get this one way to brag on the people in my life.
Here’s the thing – writing is my way. One friend makes cookies, another makes cards, another surprises me with coffee outside my office door on a random morning. Writing is my way of showing my people how awesome they are, and how valuable they are to me. Words of affirmation is the number one way to my heart (besides donuts and grilled cheese sandwiches, obviously).
So this is for you – yes you, because if you are reading this then you know me somehow and that means you are insanely important to me and hold a big place in my little heart.
First of all, thank you for EMPOWERING me. I had a realization in the past few months about how empowering my community is. I’m surrounded by people who believe in me so much. Friends who always push me to use my voice, which sometimes I am too afraid to use. Family who believe in me in such a deep and real way. You have helped me grow as a leader, a writer, a friend, and a follower of Christ.
Thank you for STAYING with me. Loyalty is huge to me. I’m a golden retriever when it comes to loyalty ranks. I have felt the hurt of people leaving, and I am insanely grateful to those who have stayed. (This doesn’t always mean physically stayed – to my people in NH, FL, OR, MA, TX, CA, IL, and so on – thanks for saying “suck it” to distance and being so faithful in friendship).
I had the privilege of sharing some thoughts with the female students at our retreat last weekend about “championing each other as women.” It was such a blast, because I care so much about that. I’ve learned so much about what that looks like from the people in my life. If I am brave enough to share a dream, you say Do it! If I feel safe enough to share my heart, you say I hear you. Each one of you is a gift to me and I do not need a special day or reason to tell you so. I believe in friendship and relationship at a soul level. We can see in Scripture that Jesus saw the power in it too. He saw the opportunities available through friendship to speak life and truth into people that just doesn’t happen any other way.
So today, this random Friday, I just want to tell you how great you are. And that I believe in you. And I’m proud of you for going on the treasure hunt of self-discovery and learning who you are and what you’re good at and finding a way to use that to the glory of God. HOW COOL. Thanks for being my friend and champion.
Love you pals,