Thursday, January 31, 2008
I am so thankful for a blessing this season of life affords me: coffee dates with the girls I know and love. I have been especially blessed with a plethora of those lately -- and the sweet, encouraging, rich times they have been.
My friend Annie Meade has been a model to me of making coffee dates with the girls in her life. She willingly gets up at any hour, or stays up until all hours, to meet with the girls who want to talk over a steamy hot latte. Annie's flexibility is probably why she is so marketable in the coffee-date business -- she'll meet me early before work (thus forcing her to be up and ready for work much earlier), or late at night at the end of a long, exhausting week to lend a sympathetic ear to a single girl from small group. She has regular meetings with other girls, where they discuss books they are reading together. One thing I loved about Annie the minute I met her was how she "buys up" all the best bargains for this season of life. Since she and her husband John don't have kids yet, she knows this is the season of life she can be so flexible to meet girls wherever -- and whenever -- they're at!
I've started making coffee dates of my own -- frequently. In fact, the idea of "going to coffee" has come to symbolize to me the very act of sharing in female Christian encouragement (similar to going to lunch, which is a close second). The Lord has been gracious to give me wonderful coffee dates with girls who are ready to share, or open up, or who are so kind to listen to me explain what I learned from a book or my sin of discontentment, and then patiently encourage one another, pointing to Christ and the Gospel. What a beautiful picture of living out the "One Anothers" of Scripture!
I don't say all this to brag. I know there are many things in life that are more easily enjoyed in different seasons. If you are a stay-at-home mom, getting coffee with another girl might pose some challenges right now. You savor that girl time when you can get it! Or, if you are low on cash, you may not be able to afford a whole bunch of trips to Starbucks, so you have to be creative. Regardless of your current season of life, let me challenge you to make the most of it -- don't waste it shooting the breeze, discussing television shows or analyzing the minutiae of your child's everyday life. Instead, engage your girlfriends with deep questions, share time in prayer, confess sin to one another and then build one another up by reminding each other of the gospel and the glory of sin forgiven! Imagine if that were our template for spending time with our Christian sisters! Is this not true fellowship?
That said, who wants a coffee date? I'll put you in my planner.