I handed in my final exam, gathered my things and walked out of my Paralegal Studies class for the last time. After 18 months I was finally DONE with what should have been a 1-year certificate program. My evenings and my weekends would now be freed up. Who would I celebrate with? And how would I fill all that new free time? Then it suddenly hit me. I have no girlfriends to help me celebrate this new free time.
I’ve fallen into the trap I had sworn I would outsmart. I’ve become too busy. I go from home to work to home to church to home to school to home to meeting to errands to home. I’m too tired to talk. Too exhausted to pick up the phone. Too emotionally spent to try to figure out how to make and sustain connection with any other human being except my husband.
That thought captured my attention: my only friend is my husband. I’ve neglected my existing girlfriends and made very little attempt to build new connections. I’m isolated and my life is out of balance. I have to do something.
So I’ve been thinking and strategizing and taking steps, because I believe that the Holy Spirit is gently nudging me out of my isolation. He wants me to rebuild a tribe of good, godly girlfriends.
- I’ve been setting aside time in my weekly schedule to have meaningful conversation each week with a girlfriend.
- I’m working on being more deliberate about building relationships with the women in my church.
- When a girlfriend crosses my mind, I’ve been trying to reach out maybe with a quick text or Whatsapp, and definitely whispering a prayer for her, instead of just letting the moment pass.
But I need more. You see I know me. I will be all about building relationships for a few weeks, then I’ll get tired, the novelty will wear off, real life will kick me in the b_tt again, and I’ll slip right back into my old habits of NOT cultivating the community I so desperately need.
So I’ve decided that I need to be accountable. To a bunch of people. Old friends, new friends, and strangers. I feel the Lord pulling me to create a space where busy Christian women can come together and be accountable to each other for building, maintaining and nurturing our life-giving tribes of girlfriends.
Will you join me on this journey? Let’s be clear. I’m not sure of the exact route we’re gonna take. I don’t know all the scenery we’ll see along the way. But I know that God has called us to live. LIVE. Not in independence and isolation, but in an interdependent, interconnected, alive and gloriously messy web of friendships. And I know that for many of us, we’re simply too tired, overwhelmed, or stressed to do this on our own. So let’s do it together.
Here’s where the journey will start.
- This blog will be where I – and hopefully guest bloggers – will share rich material and experiences and Scriptural musings that will provoke us to think, pray and act.
- I’ll be hosting a podcast in which I’ll talk to women about the issues around building meaningful relationships with others, God and ourselves.
- I’ve created a closed Facebook group that will be a safe space for us to hold each other accountable for building meaningful OFFLINE relationships. In the group we’re discussing our individual journeys. We’re sharing rich, deep and fun stuff.
- I’m also thinking about hosting a live event… but more on that later.
And finally – I had to come up with a name. Right now it’s ‘The Girlfriend Tribe: Women of Faith Committed to Building Community’. Let’s see where this goes and how this grows. Let’s see what God does.
So: are you in?