What a weekend I had! In fact, it’s taken me a few days to process everything I saw, heard, and learned at the Opryland Resort in Nashville. It was just that good. We MOPS moms sure know how to encourage each other. I must confess that five years back I would have never gotten excited about an organized playgroup, but Mothers of Preschoolers (MOPS for short) is much more than that. It’s a safe place for friendships to flourish. And, when you get all of us together without our kids, it’s just a great, big hoo-ha.
It’s a Facebook world we live in. Not all of us have chosen to enter it, but awhile ago a former pastor convinced me. I haven’t looked back. It’s been nothing but a blessing as high school and college friends have connected with me. As a busy mom, it also gives me a chance to stay connected with others I’ve met as I’ve traveled the States and the world. We plan play dates (if close to each other), share ridiculous pictures, and keep up with common interests. It helps me stay plugged in with the friendships that have formed as a result of our local MOPS group, and it enables me to encourage those I meet in other parts of the country while attending national conventions such as the one in Nashville.
Relationships can be one of the most powerful sources of joy in our lives. A personal relationship with God where we have “friended” him if you will can be the most joyful of all. Those of us who have walked with God through seasons of our lives can attest to this. He is always there. He will never “unfriend” us. Likewise, those who walk closely with God can make some of the best relationships you will ever have. Granted, not everyone out there is a peach, but there is uninhibited joy in the midst of relationships focused on the common ground of Christ. When you’re a friend of God, all of a sudden you have access to an incredible network of love, laughter, and grace.
One of my favorite passages of Scripture is the one where Jesus says, “I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.” (John 15:15b from the New International Version). He calls us his friends and shares everything he knows with us, including the unbridled joy that is a mystery to most onlookers. He will never leave us or forsake us, and he always has our best interests in mind. The best way to live a life full of joy is, simply put, to become a friend of God.
For more information on “friending” God see http://wowgod.org/friendofgod20070321.htm.
For more information on MOPS go to http://www.mops.org.