so a few weeks ago was GWO. you didn’t know? whoa. GWO.
girls weekend out, folks. it is a real thing and it happens every January. me and about 6 or 7 or 8 of my college buddies meet up for a weekend of LOTS of laughing, LOTS of games, LOTS of testimonies, LOTS of eating.
I’ve written about these weekends before, but I just want to write again about how much I love the heart of these weekends, and that is…encouraging one another in Christ. it really does boil down to that. we each tell our ‘story’ of the year…over breakfast, over lunch, late at night (although our ‘late’ nights are getting earlier and earlier!), on hikes….then we each ask one question of the gal who tells their story, and one of us then prays for her. and it’s lovely.
when I got to our house we’d all rented for the weekend this past January, I hadn’t seen these girls in one year. most of them I hadn’t even talked to on the phone (we do several emails a year)…anyways, it was truly like no time had passed. we all even looked exactly the same (except one girl wasn’t pregnant anymore, thankfully)! mindy showed me around the house and we immediately dove to the heart of matters and within those first 30 minutes I could’ve packed up and returned home and my heart would have been full, encouraged, and loved.
and lemme just break this down. these girls are full of talent and intelligence. I am truly the least of them. I’m not sure why they ever asked me to come along. . hmmm. I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say it’s because I bring desserts.
one gal in Chattanooga studied piano at college. last year, she was wondering how this year would go, as her two kids would be in school all day. she wondered how God would direct her to use her time. and guess what she’s doing…her son was struggling to memorize Scripture verses from school so she began composing little tunes on the piano to match scripture. over this past year, this grew into creating whole cd’s of children’s scripture memory songs with her and her kids singing & playing piano, which the children’s department at her church is using! she brought one along with her and let me tell you…she.is.talented.
another gal is looking at starting her own cleaning & organizing business in Atlanta. because that is her passion, and who doesn’t want to get paid for what they LOVE to do?
another gal from Texas is a Doctor in School Psychology and right now a professor part time while the other part time she is raising her two boys, 17 months apart! (both in diapers….I can relate).
another Tennessee gal is the director of the children’s ministry at her church and she also teaches Zumba on the side. she’s given us lessons before, and I was secretly grateful we didn’t get around to that this year. because she kicked my tail.
and the other Atlanta gal is busy raising her two, part-time working at an amazing church there, who with her husband had just sold their home 3 days previous!
we have a new Florida GWO-ER, who we all knew and loved back in school. she shared from her heart how the past 15 years has rocked her whole being and left her empty and broken, angry and done, before Christ. her story of Grace, Redemption, Forgiveness, and Healing was so very encouraging in a lot of levels to each of us. I am so thankful she came this particular year. God knew we needed to hear her story.
our second Chattanooga gal just had her 4th about a year ago and is homeschooling. her husband is a lawyer who works tirelessly to put laws into place, protecting businesses and individuals from easily accessed pornography and prostitution rings. all in the name of Christ. what a need!
our Colorado gal didn’t get to come this year, but she just returned from Guam where she worked at the university there. she’s currently opening her home to female college students as a discipleship ministry, while she works as a pharmaceutical tech. no big deal, right?
I always leave these weekends feeling full and ready to tackle the few weeks in front of me. this year seemed even more pivotal. maybe I see us getting older, we are certainly wayyyy passed any honeymoon stages in marriage, kids, jobs….life is hard. it’s ugly, it’s exhausting, it shows me my sin-filled state so clearly. and it’s not pretty. but these weekends are a gift, to me, from the Gift-Giver. a chance to really laugh, be open, accepted, and most of all, encouraged and prayed for. so thankful!