Elbert Hubbard, an American writer, is quoted as saying, "A friend is someone who knows all about you and still loves you." How true is that? Am I the only one who cleans my house in degrees based on who's coming over? If its a new acquaintance then I do a full clean, if its a casual friend then I do a quick tidy, if its one of my very closest pals they're lucky if I brush the dog hair off the couch!
Today I had the privilege of spending a couple of hours with a few friends, making soup and chatting it up for a local radio station. Apparently, January is soup month and I was asked to invite a couple of gal pals to our church kitchen to hang out and cook soup. The radio host is an acquaintance and when she asked I said yes with out really thinking.
As the day approached, The Big Soup Day, I started to get a little nervous. I'm not much of a cook and the soups I make generally consist of canned and frozen items being tossed into my crockpot; nothing fancy, that's for sure. I contemplated looking for a really nice 'from scratch' recipe, something that would qualify as a proper soup but I just couldn't do it.
I had to keep it real.
A few months ago, I started meeting with some fabulous ladies in our community. We ,set once a week, watch a teaching podcast by one of several fantastic lady preachers and then we talk. we talk about life and family and faith. We talk for real and we talk about being real.
I've discovered that the biggest road block to relationships between women is competition, either real or perceived. We all have a desire to show ourselves in the best light; to have the cleanest, nicest house, to have the most polite and well behaved children, to look our best at all times. We want to look like we have it all together.
So when our house is messy, our kids are having a rough day, we didn't have time to put on make up or take a shower we tend to pull away from each other. We don't invite people into our lives, into our homes. We don't want them to see our mess, to see the 'real' us. We are afraid that if people saw the real chaos, the real mayhem, the real life, nitty gritty stuff they'll ... what? Not be our friends anymore?
Turn that question around. What if you saw your friend, your neighbour, in moment of 'real' life? What if you saw dishes in their sink, dust bunnies in their corners, their kids melting down? Would you think less of them or would you think, "Phew! They deal with that too!"?
It's about Grace. Friendship. Life. Real life.
So, all that to say ... I kept it real today. I brought my store bought chicken broth, my Campbell's cream of mushroom soup, my frozen vegetables and my crockpot. I dumped my ingredients into the pot and then sat down for some conversation with my pals. After all, life is about the relationships, not the soup.
Keep it real. Real is magnificent!
We are meant for community, for friendship, for sisterhood. We are meant to know each other, to bear each other's burdens, to share each other's joy. We are women. We are meant to be extraordinary.
~Some Random Mother