Wednesday, October 22, 2014



Hey, Folks. I’d like to introduce my friend, Judy. She is my guest blogger today. Enjoy!

I’m on vacation with my friend, Debbie. We have been friends for nearly forty years, and that’s a long, long time. We first met when her oldest son was 18 months old and we bonded immediately. We had so much in common—our husbands were both ministers. Debbie’s brother was a good college friend of my husband, Don’s, we all wanted to do mission work, and we all loved to laugh. That seemed like a lot in common.
Over the past forty years, Deb and I have learned that we actually have more differences than likenesses. So, yesterday as she was enjoying the great outdoors like a raving maniac and I wasn’t, she asked, “Why are we friends?” I couldn’t answer. We have such a bond but it makes no sense. Let me give a perfect example of why I have come to that conclusion.  We came to Florida because Debbie loves it here. She loves the ocean and the sand; it “fills her soul.” I find that this fine sand gets everywhere, sticks to my legs and feet, messes up a newly vacuumed car, and so on. Deb feels the healing power of the salt water, loves the way the waves explode up to the shore, and feels God’s power in every wave. I feel like my skin is shriveling from the salt in the water even more than it is from aging. It feels weird to me when the tide rolls in and moves the sand under my feet. I’m not on solid ground and I don’t like it. The ocean is teeming with all manner of strange creatures that might suck on my toes, or worse. I’d much rather enjoy the chlorine-filled pool that is closer to the house surrounded by concrete, which doesn’t dirty up my feet.
My friend is an encourager to me. She makes this realist stretch. She makes this non-adventurous soul step out of her comfort zone. Yesterday without her encouragement I would not have gone on a two-mile bike ride, especially after falling over in the driveway before we even got started. I would not have parked ‘said bike’ and hiked back to this point to watch the sunset, all the while being eaten by mosquitoes. Also, my singing would not have been drowned out by a locust, or cicada or katydid (we can’t decide which it was and don’t want to know). And, I certainly would not have gone into that freezing water at the pool while even more mosquitoes were chewing on me. I loved our trip to the beach today, but I wasn’t planning to go into the salty ocean. Once again, my sister encouraged me until I got out there with her.
Only two people in my life have made me want to stretch so much, my husband and my best girlfriend. “Thank you God, for both of them. And thank you for this week on the beach.”
Yesterday when Debbie wrote her flowery descriptive words in this blog describing the sunset, I asked her if she really thought that way. When she asked how I thought about it, I replied, “I thought it was real purdy!” She’s working on stretching my vocabulary as well.

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