It’s a “ftf” – FAVORITE THINGS FRIDAY!!
One of my all-time favorite things is meeting up with women and talking (this will not be a surprise to anyone)! I’ve always loved being with women and I love hanging out with dear, old friends as well as meeting new people. While I once struggled with “dead space” and feeling like SOMEONE (ok…often ME) had to fill it, I’m loving living in the space of “I’m cool with the silence” and/or letting others do the talking. I think God is maturing me to want to LISTEN more than TALK (hey – no laughing…it’s a work in progress!).
People’s stories…that reminds me – thanks to all of you that shared YOUR story last weekend (Easter) of when you realized your need for a Savior/Jesus. It was a blast reading all the Facebook posts that included the #thatsmystorywhatsyours tag. I’m still seeing new ones pop up and it’s been a joy to read your sweet thanks to God for what He has done! God is AWESOME and I’m reminded, over and over again, that He meets people RIGHT WHERE THEY ARE…and at all different ages/phases! 🙂 I’ve had a cool conversation as a result of that blog/ask…it happened last Friday.
Here’s the post I’m referring to – if you missed it: https://lorieubanks.wordpress.com/2015/04/03/thatsmystorywhatsyours/
I was headed to Stillwater on Friday (another story), but just had to make the side trip to Tulsa to get in a little #lukethomas time and drop off an Easter treat or two! I arrived Thursday afternoon and was gone in about 24 hours but – got my love tank filled a tad…especially because he REALLY is attempting to say “Lolli” now!
(Sorry – I ALWAYS get side-tracked when I think of him or type his name!)
Back to my favorite thing…coffee date in Tulsa. (Focus…focus…)
I’m so proud of my daughter – as a result of attending the “IF” conference several months ago, she felt prompted to just put an open invitation out on her Facebook feed for anyone in Tulsa to come for coffee and conversation on Friday mornings. The small group of women arrives in sweats, PJ’s or “real clothes” to head to work in – some with a baby or two and all with a desire to connect to each other and discuss what God is teaching them. I had planned to “vacate” and take Luke for a walk or something, but Britt encouraged me to stay and so I did.
Do you ever feel like God just orchestrates meeting someone? That’s what last friday was for me. ONE friend of Britt’s arrived and we settled in with small talk and some chatter over a devotion/video they had both watched, etc.. At some point I said, “Can I ask questions? Is that ok?” and they both laughed (I wasn’t trying to run the thing…REALLY…just didn’t want to interfere with their “plan”, etc!). So- I asked my new friend about her job and family and then asked the two of them how they met…they both laughed. Brittney explained that they didn’t really know! That some how they were Facebook friends and when Britt originally put the invite on facebook for “Coffee on Fridays”, she was the first to respond! This sweet woman showed up at my daughter’s house (when they started these coffee mornings/several weeks before) without ever meeting her before! LOVE IT!!
With the #thatsmystorywhatsyours heavy on my mind that day – I told her about Meredith and I asking our friends to share their “Jesus stories” and so I asked her, “So – what’s yours? What’s your story with God?”
At this point, she looked a little nervous and I’m pretty sure the color on her chest and cheeks changed to a pinky/red. She nervously started, but then the most amazing story came from her lips. A story of struggle, heartache, poor decisions, scary/painful situations and God’s overall protection in her life…and threaded throughout was an AMAZING story of forgiveness. She told of the kind of forgiveness that I can’t quite imagine. The “mom” in me found the words hard to hear and yet her story was beautiful. I felt like I wanted to stand up and hug her about 10 times, but decided to just let her keep talking. She said she hadn’t shared all of the info with many other people – and didn’t quite know why she was with us, but I’m so thankful that she did! It gave me the opportunity to later thank God for how He worked in her life and allows me the privilege to continue to pray for her as her story continues!
It was an awesome morning and a good reminder to me that sometimes people just need to be ASKED, “Hey – what’s your story?” I wonder how many stories I’ve missed hearing because I didn’t ASK!?!
When was the last time YOU shared your story with someone? More importantly, when was the last time you ASKED someone to share their’s with you? I need to be better/bolder about asking…
So, yea…wanna have coffee??
P.S. To top the morning off, we had the most AMAZING sweet treats (pictured above). If I lived anywhere near a “Merritt’s” in Tulsa – I would be an additional 100 pounds. I’ve never seen a bakery like that in my life! Also- the coffee cup…yeah, that’s my sister-in-law and her family…a fun gift to Brittney and Phil! Made me smile all morning looking at their faces…I miss them! 😦