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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Friendship and Smiles

Two weekends ago I went Women of Faith, a Christian women's conference, in Philadelphia with several friends. On Friday we heard Patsy Clairmont and Andy Andrews-and enjoyed both quite a bit. That evening Anita Renfroe made us laugh. Saturday we heard more from Patsy and Andy along with Lisa Welchel, Marilyn Meberg, and my favorite Mary Beth Chapman (wife to singer Steven Curtis Chapman).

Some of the speakers spoke to my heart and my faith more than others.  There were powerful moments throughout though.  A couple things have really stuck out to me, and I thought I'd share them.

Lisa Welchel spoke on friendship.  (She was on The Facts of Life and has the book Creative Correction that I want to read.)  This year I have been more purposeful in reaching out to other women.  And it's worked. By inviting a couple acquaintances over, we've gotten to know one another better.  Some friends I just email or call somewhat regularly...regardless, I've been trying.  Anyway, Lisa said something very convicting.  She shared how some friends once told her that they felt to get to know her on a personal level they needed to read her BLOG and books.  Um...yeah.  Do our friends and family know what is happening with us if they don't check in regularly with our blog?  I don't know.  Some do...too many don't.  But somehow, at times Iexpect my friends to want to read my blog(s) (we have a family blog, in addition to this one) to know what is happening with us.  I thank Lisa for pointing out my horribly faulty and sinful attitude.

I'll share just one other thing.  Andy Andrews (author of The Butterfly Effect and others) talked about how by smiling when we talk it can really change our attitudes and the perception of us.  It's really just choosing to be happy.  He even suggests practicing in a mirror...because it is not as natural as you would think. Our daughter, M, has told me I have grumpy lips sometimes.  Um, yeah.  Convicted again.  I definitely notice a difference with her response to me when I correct or discipline while smiling.  I'm trying to make an effort to generally smile more.

We stayed overnight in a hotel (even though we live about an hour away and could have driven). (The hotel had just opened on Monday so everything was brand-spanking-new!) We had more girl time together. It was such fun! We were quite the group. Four of us were in our thirties, two in their forties, and one in her seventies. Quite the age range, huh? Most of us had met before and were good friends, but two women I didn't know. Regardless of when we met, I think we all had a great time.

I'm not sure I would go to Women of Faith again, but I did enjoy myself and took away bits of wisdom here and there.


Miller Moments said...

I'm a HUGE Women of Faith fan. I've gone every year for as long as I can remember and am sad that this year I won't be able to attend. Lisa Welchel's books are amazing. I think I have all of them, except her most recent one on friendship.

I think the thing about the blog thing that frustrates me is that people these days seem to prefer email, blog and facebook type relationships. It's really difficult to cultivate friendships in person (at least for me). Everywhere you go, people are texting these days. They don't even need to talk on their phones-they text!

I am constantly trying to reach out and plan things with my women friends and I find that they all come and seem to enjoy our time together...but if I don't plan it, it doesn't get planned. No one else takes the reins.

Ok, enough from me! :) Thanks for a great post!

Carrie said...

I haven't been to a WOF conference yet - although they come here every year. It either just doesn't work out or the speaker line-up doesn't grab me. Now if the Chapmans would head this way with WOF this year, of course I'd go! =D

It's interesting hearing your take-away thoughts from your weekend. Thanks for sharing a bit more!

Dorie said...

Sounds like a great weekend to grow closer to the Lord in your walk, and take home some great applications. I hear you about the connecting with others. Sometimes it can be difficult to reach out to others for whatever reason, but it is always worth the effort!

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