This is the week where we all go and buy a copy of Jill Savage’s book No More Perfect Moms. Buy it this week and get $100 in bonuses when you send in your receipt to NMPM (I’ll tell you how tomorrow). This week we join forces and get the book on the bestseller list and we tell the world we are sick of pin-perfect lives, of comparing our insides to others’ outsides and where we embrace our weaknesses because we know that is how God shines ( I got the book for free to be part of this launch team, but I believe in it enough to buy and give one-you can’t have mine!- to you, my favorite readers. Rafflecopter at the end of the post.)
I am excited about this week in theory. See, I promised myself that this week I would post more imperfect posts. Posts about real life. And even though, I desperately want you to be real and content with who you are, I worry that exposing my weaknesses will bring disdain and judgement. But I know how Satan uses fear to immobilize us and how until a deed is done fear and bravery must battle within. Now picture me up on a high dive, jumping and diving in….
We moved to Michigan 5 1/2 years ago. And I have struggled every day with friendship in this state. Michigan is a state of families. Everyone has a cabin up north or a family member with one. They have long traditions of attending the Cherry festival or camping in the UP 4 times a summer. They never travel more then 3 hours to visit family and they attend multiple family events each month. And they are so busy they rarely have time to get together. At least, this is how it feels. (We don’t have time either so this is all a pity party-logic doesn’t apply.)
Despite joining Bible Studies, starting moms groups, going to MOPS, I feel bad for myself because my phone rarely rings. Our families live fair away and visits are rare. Michigan has been a lonely place.
And I am a hard friend to have. If I call two times and you never call me back, I assume you don’t like me. If I connect with a mom, I dream about about just stopping by to say “hi” but convince myself I would be a nuisance. If a friend is a neat freak, I feel inadequate inviting her to my house, so I just don’t–no matter how gracious she is. I assume she won’t enjoy my picked-up but cluttered home. I struggle with rapid judging, where I assume too much based on looks or only partial knowledge of a situation. God is gracious, I should stop assuming friends won’t be. I should stop expecting perfection from them.
We all need friends. And a friend will never be exactly like us. Our husband can’t meet all our needs and he certainly won’t relate to all our emotions. Having friends means we are not alone and Satan can’t convince us otherwise. But friends will never be perfect. They will forget to call, cancel at the last minute, have bad manners, speak harshly because they are human. Like our other relationships, friendship requires grace, patience and effort. Not every person we meet will be a good friend. Some will be bad friends and some will stay forever in the acquaintance list no matter how often you see her. But those bad friends can’t stop us from pursuing more friends.
I’ve grown weary of friend searching. But the truth is I’ve made a few good ones here–most who are completely different from me but still sweet. My pity is a failure to recognize what God has given me and invest in those relationships more. And my struggles, well, they are stopping me from making new friends and from going deeper with the ones I have.
I am tired of replaying the “Michigan is a lonely place”reel. In Jill’s book, she quotes Dear Abby and says there are two kinds of people: ones who walk into a room of strangers, and think, “Here I am.Come talk to me. Come make me feel comfortable.” And others who walk into a room of strangers and look around and say, “There you are! You look interesting to get to know. Tell me about yourself.” I am praying to become the second. Will you join me?
Below is giveaway for Jill’s book. It ends on Thursday morning at 6am because if you don’t win, you need time to buy the book and get your extras. Keep coming back this week for more imperfect posts.