This title is more than a Beatles song; but a fact I am grateful for. Last year about this time, I participated in a bible study by Margaret Feinberg called “The Sacred Echo: Hearing God’s Voice in Every Area of Your Life.” Aside from this being a study where I met most of the Lylas it was a great study in realizing that He can speak to us in more than the obvious way; through scripture. Today the “echoes” were endless and all were reminders that no matter how independent I think I am, or the confidence I feel in choices I make…. things are always made better with friendships.
I worked out twice today. God said he made me for more so I decided to start giving more. I ‘earned’ my Curves Smart Card today; a key fob that slips into each strength machine and acts as your own personal trainer. It gets you to push harder and reach personalized goals that the Curves trainers test your abilities on. I wanted the lights to turn green and blink to show me I was doing the right thing but with each pump of my arms or push of my legs I dug as deep as I could for my best friend… Jesus. I was made for more… I’m giving him more.
Lysa’s devotion today said that “Friends don’t let friends eat before thinking….. we need measures of accountability. While I cannot expect anyone else to make decisions for me, it was motivating to know that someone else cared about my struggles. We encouraged each other with this motto, “If it’s not part of our plan, we don’t put in our mouths.” Since I have become a Christian, Jesus has made me realize that I need accountability in my life. My life “Pre-Jesus” (the P-J Era) had zero accountability and we know where that got me, so this one is huge. The best part of my accountability partner is that she is the newest Lyla and a pleasant surprise that Jesus has dropped into our small group. Kathy wanted to do this study with me and as much as I wanted to ask her to participate, it was not something I thought she would be open to. “Um…. Excuse me, I know I have only known you two weeks and I don’t want you to think I feel that you need to do this with me; just having met you….but do you want to do a bible study about craving God and not food, with me?” Uh, yeah. Me being excited about it and sharing was enough that she took that leap all on her own and I am ever so grateful. So now I have a real life person to be accountable to in the newest Lyla, a friendly competition (even if we don’t call it that) with my mom and sisters 2500 miles away, and me being accountable in this blog to the 1 or 500 that may find it on the web… taking what they need and leaving the rest. (Jesus loves the leftovers)
The most literal of echoes today was dinner with “Echo.” No… her name is not “Echo”, it is Michelle, but I met her in the Sacred Echo study and there were two Michelle’s. I referred to her as Echo a few times and it stuck. I haven’t seen her since she hosted a Lylas Soup Swap at her house in January, which was amazing but entirely too long ago. We talked about everything and nothing at all; conversation ranging from husbands and jobs, what I’ve been up to and her love for cooking. When it circled to smoothie talk I am embarrassed to admit that my notebook came out and I picked her brain for an hour on combinations, secrets, ingredients, storage options, and milk vs. vanilla yogurt, or juice. It was like we saw each other yesterday and something we both needed.
I love that I can pick up the phone and get the encouragement I need from Lynnette no matter what the topic. Mom always knows just what to say, regardless of the scenario. The best part of our relationship being that we have one at all, since I drifted away for about twelve years. I am excited to make friends at my gym and now going twice a day, getting more opportunities to put myself out there and name drop “Pssst….. I know Jesus and if you wanna meet him you can visit anytime.” (Okay… maybe that isn’t our first conversation; gotta ease them into it). I am excited that this part of my journey allows me to have something in common with my mother in law – Weight Watchers AND Curves and can’t wait to see results and compare notes with her the next time we get together. Lylas is about strengthening our relationship with him while creating better friendships with each other. How awesome that the common denominator for everything in my life is Jesus?
I guess I get by with more than a little help from my friends. Without them I can’t imagine where I would be but thankfully, with Jesus in the picture…. I will never have to figure that out.