Monday, December 21, 2009

The Gift of Friendship

The gift of friendship ...what can I say? I am so thankful and grateful; yes I am!

In fact my friend Sue bought this door hanger for me one year and I always have a special place for it each Christmas. Thank you Sue!

Since I've been spending so much time in my home office, it's hanging on the door where I can see it and ...remember my friends.

This past week, I had several opportunities to celebrate with a few of my favorite friends.

And since my blogging friends have become so important to me, I thought I'd share with you. I thought I could write it all in one post but I may need to separate them into several so I don't lose half of my readers; LOL.

I'm so blessed by my friendship with Jamie.

We met because of her daughter Ellie. When Ellie was about 2 or 3 years old, she was in my Bible Study Fellowship (BSF) class. I was her children's class leader for three years. And one day, Ellie spotted me in church one Sunday as her dad Todd was holding her. I hadn't realized until then that we went to the same church.

A deep and wonderful friendship developed between her mom Jamie and me.

I'm actually old enough to be Jamie's mom but I've found our age difference hasn't mattered at all. Jamie is mature beyond her years or else I must be "young at heart" (LOL).

Jamie and Todd moved to San Antonio about five years ago but we've continued our friendship. They were celebrating their 16th wedding anniversary and ...do you know what they chose to do?

They ran a marathon in Tucson!

Now that's a true Fitness Friday gal. I even interviewed Jamie for Fitness Friday twice. You can read the posts here and here. She has five kids that she home schools and is in great shape. You need to find out ...her secret.

Since Jamie and Todd were flying into the Phoenix airport and renting a car to drive to Tucson for their race, they arranged to meet me for breakfast.

The Farm at South Mountain was the perfect place to meet. For anyone who is visiting Phoenix or who lives here, this is a fabulous "must see". They have several places to eat, a farmer's market, little shops, organic farming and an outdoor area to picnic and ...have fun with your kids.

We ate at The Morning Glory Cafe, which is outdoors. But we were so glad they had heaters and believe me, we chose a table close to one of them that morning.

Todd is a teaching leader in a men's class of Bible Study Fellowship (BSF) in the San Antonio area. If you ever have the opportunity to check out the BSF website, Todd's face is the photo on their video. And three of his kids attend also in their age group. Can you imagine that they are doing homiletics?

I was so excited to learn of some of the new changes in BSF. For the first time, they will be studying Isaiah this next year. The verse that sits right in front of me as I'm typing away on my computer is:

"So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." Isaiah 41:10

That Scripture has helped me through many a trying day, believe me. When I begin to fear, I look down at that verse and am reminded of how God is my strength.

Hmm ...as a graduate of BSF, I'm praying about whether to return next year.

I had such a fun time catching up with Todd and Jamie that morning. The kids are growing so fast. I was so excited to learn that their 15 year old son Braden read "Do Hard Things" after I interviewed Lexi who is another 15 year old. You can read that interview here, just in case you missed it. Lexi had shared about how much this book impacted her life. BTW, Lexi is Jill's daughter of Forever N Ever N Always and now Lexi has started a blog called Choosing to Wait.

Braden has decided to lead a study group of his teen friends through the "Do Hard Things" book.

I get so excited and hopeful for this next generation when I learn about teens like Braden and Lexi. Yay God!

I wanted to share one more photo before ending this post. Two of Jamie and Todd's daughters Mary Beth and Ellie performed at their Christmas piano recital. I can't believe how quickly they are growing and maturing. I met Ellie when she was only three years old and I remember when Mary Beth was born!

Again, I'm so thankful for the gift of friendship. I hope you'll come back as I continue to share this Christmas week. Our bloggy world seems to be a bit quiet as many bloggers are taking time to spend with their families. But I will be here!

Merry Christmas!



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19 comments:

sonja said...

Debbie:

That is a wealth of friendship you just shared! How beautiful to look back and reflect on the very special friends God brings into our lives... and I count you as one of mine!

Love and Christmas hugs!

Sonja

Mom to 9 Blessings! said...

And we are so thankful for you Debbie!

Thanks be to God for the work done in Braden's heart through reading Do Hard Things. I highly recommend it to all parents of teens.

Love you!
Jill

Beth in NC said...

I love the hanger and the pictures. You look the same age as Jamie!

You are so sweet. I wish we lived close to each other.

Have a wonderful Christmas Debbie!

Love!
Beth

Rosslyn Elliott said...

Merry Christmas!

Debbie said...

Your right, friendship is definitely one of God's best blessings! Have a wonderful Christmas week..

Hugs, Debbie

Denise said...

Such a sweet post.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Thena said...

Merry Christmas to you and yours.

Beth E. said...

Debbie,
I'll be taking some time off from blogging, but will check in from time to time.

I just wrote my last post for the year (posted a video, too). Check it out when you can.

Merry Christmas to you!

eph2810 said...

How cool that your friends made a stop to meet with your for breakfast before heading to Tuscon. I have to find that place "The Farm" I mean. Something I might enjoy :) - Thank you for sharing about your friendships (love the door-hanger)...

Peace & Love,
Iris

~*Michelle*~ said...

wow......what a beautiful friendship you have been blessed with. Thank you for sharing!

Merry Christmas Debbie!

Anna May said...

Debbie,
You have been blessed with many friends and many talents. You make people feel loved and special as soon as you meet them. I love reading all the posts you wrote about Jamie and her healthy lifestyle and how she has incorporated it into her family.
I know times seem hard right now but keep blogging and God will keep reminding you of His Blessings upon you.
Love you

Anna May

Phivos Nicolaides said...

Best wishes by heart my dearest friend Debbie and Merry Christmas!

Michele Williams said...

I too love the gift of Friendship! I will cherish my precious blogging friends too. Have a Merry Christmas dear friend.

Felisol said...

Dear Debbie,
Friends are the family we choose. I can easily understand that you are strengthened by your valuable friendships. You are irst and foremost a giver. These days it may be time learning to be a receiver as well.
I see from the comments you have many friends who love you. Just open up the door and let them in.
There is a time for everything. That has been my lesson for December.
Isaiah is a rich friend where I've often found comfort and strength.
I love the strong promises given by God.
He will never fail us. Never.
A Blessed Christmas to you and your family from Felisol

The Real Me! said...

My friend I came by to wish you and your whole family a VERY Merry Christmas!!

Big Christmas Size hugs!
Kim

Donetta said...

Urgent Prayer For Eddie (Love Bug)
I am typing this for Denise of Shortybears Place she is on the phone with me now

Eddie has had a stroke and is in hospital under observation. They were unable to get the stroke medication in time. So far they have done a CAT scan and a MRI and other test are being awaiting . His leg is effected. He is able to speak. This is written at 9:30 p.m. TN time

He is in Memorial Hospital Chattanooga TN. She is alone so if any friends are able please consider coming to her side. He is being moved to room momentarily.


This is written by Donetta of A Life Uncommon and she can be reached through me.

L-Jay said...

I love the gingerbread door-knocker ;)

God jul fra Norge!

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