Friends in Cyber Places

This blogging thing? It’s given me something I never dreamed of. I tend to be kind of old-fashioned progressive. You know the type, I realize that cursive is becoming obsolete, but I grieve it’s death, kicking and screaming the whole way…bordering on denial.

As a regular scoffer of online relationships, I never dreamed that I would make REAL, lasting friendships in the blogosphere. I called them “virtual” friendships. And the “virtual” Free Dictionary defines this word: Existing in the mind, especially as a product of the imagination.

But these friendships have moved beyond imagination, and to reality. Comments have led to e-mails, e-mails to phone calls and now I even have a few meet-ups and visits on my agenda with these evermore becoming “Real” friends. They have encouraged my writing, picked me up when I was down, called just to chat, checked on me when I announced that my husband lost his job…and one of them even offered to help financially so that my children could receive Christmas presents. Though it wasn’t necessary in the physical, the offer was essential to the healing of my worried mind, assuring me that all would be well.

How I have loved getting to know these dear hearts. Each one is so different. Adela was the first to contact me. She sent me an unexpected e-mail declaring, “Let’s be blogging BFF’s.” Her wonderful blog Once A Little Girl never fails to fill me with wonder as she remembers things from her childhood in the voice of her younger self.

Jennifer Ferguson’s sweet spirit reaches through the screen to give you a warm embrace. Shortly after arriving on the blogging scene she invited me to be a part of Soli Deo Gloria Sisterhood, a blogging community sharing blog links on Tuesdays. Our friendship has grown like a rising loaf of yeasty bread…Yum (Can you tell I’m fasting bread?)

I started reading and commenting on Renee’s blog Lessons From Teacher’s and Twits and stalked her like a rock star. Her posts were filled with wittiness and humor and occasionally a little heartbreak. It wasn’t until I wrote a post about quitting blogging that I realized that I was even a blip on her radar. She held up my arms as in the story of Moses, and stirred up the blogging community to do the same when I considered a permanent break from blogging.

And then there’s sweet Emily. Emily who is in every way an artist, who feels every emotion deeply and dishes out compassion and gooey love straight from the heart of Christ. Her paintings and her prose are full of the pain of beauty found in heartbreak; the love that binds together a man and woman as well as the product of their love; and the joy of life walking with Him. What can I say about her other than that to know her is to love her?

And there are others, too many of you to mention. But know that you are all an unexpected treasures to me.

I recently had a conversation with my son about how surprised I was at the sincerity and depth of friendship I had been experiencing through this blogging experiment. He chastised my old soul with the wisdom that often defies his eighteen years. “What’s the difference between blogging friends and pen pals? Would you say that a pen pal wasn’t a “real” friend?” So there you have it. Wisdom from an eighteen year old boy, living in a 21st century world, redefining the word “friend”.

Sharing with my good friend Michelle:

and budding friendship with L. L. Barkat: On In Around button

and with Lovely Laura:

and I have shared 4 people I am thankful for with Ann:

my beautiful friend Emily:

Why I Want to Quit Blogging

Sometimes, I’ll read a post by one of my favorite bloggers: Ann, Leanne, Emily or Jen, and I’ll think…it’s useless. Why do I even try to pen down my thoughts and feelings? My words are so inadequate…their words are so unique. Why do I even try?

And then I remember the words to a very old Amy Grant song:

And all I ever have to be
Is what you’ve made me.
Any more or less would be a step
Out of your plan.

As you daily recreate me,
Help me always keep in mind
That I only have to do
What I can find.

And all I ever have to be
All I have to be
All I ever have to be
Is what you’ve made me.

********

God doesn’t want me to be someone else.
He wants me to be me.
If I wrote just like Ann Voskamp, one of us would be unnecessary…
I think it might be me!!

Don’t die a carbon copy, die an original, a masterpiece because you’ve allowed the Master to piece you together.  Let the master artist carve you into the beauty He has in mind.

Finding grace everyday with Ann:

I am forever grateful for
#49 – my internal alarm clock…it never fails me!

#50 – a husband who helps taxi the kids

#51 – cold dagger rain pelting the roof

#52 – a Community Center with a gym for $30 a year!

#53 – dirty dishes, because that means that we’ve eaten…

#54 – words…beautiful, ugly, healing, painful, wonderfully expressive words

#55 – I long for more joy and have found it in Eucharisteo..