Monday, January 14, 2013

My top ten ways to make sisterhood friends

My dear friend, Anne

Today, Jen and the Soli Sisters (my nickname for the Soli Deo Gloria Sisterhood) are writing about a favorite topic of mine ... the sisterhood.

In the sister/friend department I am ridiculously spoiled with ~

          *two wonderful sisters
          *six adorable sisters.in.law
          *two lovely daughters
          *many sweet friends around the world
          *and, most recently, great blogging friends.

This year, instead of Christmas cards, I found a cute, feminine, winter card that I am sending this month to my closest friends in each city where I have lived. (I only have 30 cards, so apologies to my friends that would have been 31, 32, 33 ...)

But, I often hear from women that they are lonely and lacking deep and meaningful friendships. So, with 60 years experience of making friends, I offer you my top ten ways to make sisterhood friends.

Ten: Pray for God to provide the friend(s) you need and then keep your eyes open. I do this each time we have moved.

Nine: Be friendly. I am an introvert so will never be the cute, funny, upfront belle of the party with a crowd around her. 

I will be the quiet in the back of the room person, who is smiling and with an open spirit, introducing myself to a few people.

I have many friends, because I take the initiative to be warm and friendly.

Eight: Be yourself. If I am comfortable with myself, it is easier for women to want to be my friend. No games, no pretend ... just me.

Seven: Take the initiative and invite someone you just met (and like) out for coffee. This provides extended time to get to know each other and, if it is awkward, you can keep it short.

Six: If that goes well, invite them to your home for lunch. I feel I know a person more, once I have seen their home. (their decorating style, their books, etc.)

Five: Do not prejudge a person, deciding they would not make a good friend. (too tall/too short, too conservative/too liberal, too put together/too messy, too wild/too boring etc.) I have become close friends with women that are very different than me.

Kate, (who drew my blog header) and I call our friendship, "the mismatch made in heaven." She is tall, skinny, loves clothes, sparkly things and animal prints, is an extrovert and the list of ways we are different, goes on and on. I am none of these, yet we are the dearest of friends.

Four: Do not give up easily ... sometimes you have to just gently barge in. For various (usually painful) reasons, some women are rather shut down when it comes to making friends. Be gentle and keep pursuing them. Some of my closest friends, have come this way. 

Three: I believe you can never have too many friends. Of course, you will not be intimate friends with everyone. But I really believe, every woman you meet, has something that only she can offer you. I have learned a lot and cherished some friends that I have only been with once.

I have saved my favorite two ways to make sisterhood friends ... for last.

Two: Take every chance you have to pray with women. Prayer is such a personal thing and leads to deep friendships.

When our kids were little, I prayed once a week with Dana and Kae (while our kids played together.) We met in each others homes and also enjoyed lunch together. Three years of praying together creates a true friendship.

I pray with women at church, in my home, on facebook, on the phone ... any chance I get. 

One: My #1 way that I have made close, deep and longlasting friendships is to ... do ministry together. 

I have planned retreats, started MOPS groups, lead Bible studies and done so many other creative things in ministry with beautiful women who became ... my friends ... my sisterhood!

Do you have good friends?        

29 comments:

  1. I love this post. I am settling into a new life and am looking at ways my friendships will and naturally need to change. I need more "mom" friends now that I am raising a little one full time. I am looking forward to being brave and inviting new relationships into my life. I am reorganizing our apartment so that it is more visitor friendly so that we can entertain and have people over and space to enjoy them. I decided to buy a pretty guestbook that friends who visit can sign as a record of our happy times in our home with friends and family. Thank you G for your wise advice, it comes at just the right time.

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  2. Glenda, this rocks in so many ways. You know which one I really love? The inviting of one into my house. Since I am an introvert, too, inviting someone in is a really personal experience. I love this idea. So glad you are participating in the SDG link up!!

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  3. I love your list, Glenda! You have a wealth of knowledge and enjoy your lists so much. I'm an introvert who loves people, so I'm right there with you. I've had many a new friend over for lunch who have become lifelong friends. And you do indeed make wonderful friends doing ministry together.

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  4. I have to think that
    anyone who is lucky
    enough to have a
    meaningful talk with
    you would be hooked....
    You have such a kind
    and compassionate spirit.
    Plus, you are just plain
    fun!

    I think when you move
    around a lot, you pick
    these things up, unwittingly,
    over the years. I will be
    sad when we eventually
    move from here, but not
    afraid that I won't make
    new friends.

    Love how you broke it
    all down!

    xo Suzanne

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  5. You are my friend and I so appreciate how you have instantly welcomed me into your life. I am doing many things on your list and I so appreciate your list...it is awesome! Thank you for encouraging me to not give up. I have to say that I have a hard time believing you are an introvert!!! :)

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  6. Good pointers for all of us to keep in mind, and as I think about my circle of friends, I would definitely say that my dearest friends are the ones with whom I have shared many prayers.

    Speaking of friends, Sophie just spend the weekend with 4 girls from Euroquest. She left one girl and came back another girl, it was so wonderful for her to be able to rehash their awesome summer memories.
    A friend is a blessing, as are you to so many of us!
    Kate
    PS- hope your Bible study went well this week too!

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  7. oh, glenda, this is amazing. i know your heart for friendship, ministry, being truly yourself, and loving others well. thank you for sharing your list of ideas.

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  8. I love your list. We moved to our present town in response to a 10-yr-old girl's prayers. She prayed for a friend and my Emily was her answer. Is it any wonder they treasure their friendship? I, too,treasured friends--some new, some old and some I've never met in "real-life." God planned friendship and I'm blessed.

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  9. love this list and reminders to not give up too easily! It surely can be hard to put yourself out there and build community over and over again! Great encouragement!

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  10. Love your List. Thank God I have good friends all over the world and right here where I live :)

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  11. I love this list...thank you! There is something about you that is very attractive and warm - I can sense it even across your blog - you are LOVELY!!

    Sarahx

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  12. Glenda, this list is wonderful. Some of my dearest friendships have been made through ministry and praying together. There's just something about being vulnerable with another woman before the Lord, that creates a special bond... love that!
    I'm so glad you stopped by Mary @ Woman to Woman today. Thank you for taking time to visit and comment!
    Blessings to you ~ Mary

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  13. What great advice, Glenda. I'm an introvert, too, yet after 50 years, I've somehow collected such a wonder set of sisters, too. And yes, some of them are SO unlike me. :-) That makes it all the more interesting.

    I especially like # 2: Pray with women. Yes! Doesn't it take our friendship to a deeper level when we do?

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  14. Glenda,
    Through the years friends have come and gone for different reasons...life circumstances or a realization (usually from me) that the friendship isn't all that healthy. The basis of my healthy friendships starts with fellowship in Christ; with that there is no jealousy, or competition going on! The secular friends are those that accept my love for Jesus and respect who I am. It's all good.
    As my mother would say - with any relationship, start slowly, as a slow fire burns forever as a bonfire burns out quickly! (She would repeat this to me during my dating years!!)
    Thanks for the post... love "hearing" from you!
    Love, your blogging friend from Boston

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  15. you have no idea how right up the ally this is for me!
    i too am an introvert...it is so hard in large crowds. and weirdly i love my alone time...kinda a hermit maybe?
    all your points are so good! I am sharing them on my facebook page after this....love you! I really do consider you one of my friend G and I would love to come to Chicago and stay sometime..wouldn't that be fun?
    xo

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  16. this is soooo good, and i totally need this. :)
    i'm not at all an extrovert.
    thanks for sharing, Glenda!
    xoxo

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  17. "The mismatch made in heaven." I love it! That is just perfect for me and my friend Ethel.

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  18. I loved this Glenda beautiful and heart felt. Have a blessed week my friend.

    God bless you
    Kate
    xoxo

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  19. My best friends are my sisters...5 here on earth and 1 in Heaven. Really loved your list!

    Wishing you a blessed day!

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  20. Love your tips- and number one especially. I, too, pray for God to pick my friends- so often He chooses the women I wouldn't have even pursued if it hadn't been for His clear nudge- and each time, His "pick" is exactly what my heart needs. Love how He knows us best.

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  21. What a beautiful post Glenda. Friends are one of God's most special blessings. I'm so happy to have befriended and met you this past year! Hope the Lord allows are paths to cross again soon!

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  22. What an excellent list! And I really like #s one and two - so insightful! When we bear our hearts with each other in this way, for God, it really does make us closer. So glad for friends like you!

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  23. This is a great list! Open, friendly, inviting, taking iniatitive, connecting spiritually. Great ideas.

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  24. Love this post. Some really good practical ways to make a friend. Especially the one about praying for God to bring a friend and then keeping your eyes open. Some times a good friend is right there in front of us if we just take time and look. Thanks for stopping by my blog. I'm a new follower.

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  25. Thanks for visiting us today Glenda! SO nice to have you comment and I love your post on how to make friends...thanks for the clarity, and I hope this year is wonderful for you.
    xo Nancy
    Powellbrowerhome.com

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  26. I have said it time and time again that I am blessed to have the woman that I do in my life. Although I have no blood sisters ~ I have a cousin who is like one and girlfriends that are sisters by heart. I treasure these women and the women that I have meant through blogging ~ amazing....

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  27. Glenda, this is the post I meant to say "great words of wisdom". I'm not good with casual friendships...Dave told me I lacked the yackitty yack gene -smile- but my friendships are deep and of many decades. My blogging friends are my newest friends and if we don't meet this side of the veil, we'll meet the other.

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  28. For some reason, I am not getting your regular posts in my inbox - but I did get three in one tonight! All three are wonderful - but this one just takes the cake. You are such a special person, Glenda - gifted with hospitality and compassion. No wonder you have so many dear friends.

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  29. Thank you for sharing this, Glenda! EVERYONE needs a friend, so there is no reason any of us needs to be alone/bored...if we just reach out! LOVE all the reasons...
    and most of all, you are such a precious person yourself, who wouldn't want to be with you?
    Thanks for the wisdom!!
    Hoping to see you sometime! :)
    Donna Jeanne in Wien

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