A friend is always loyal, and a brother is born to help in time of need. Proverbs 17:17 NLT
Every year I host what’s now been named a Friendship Brunch. I think over the year and ruminate on who God has brought into my life. Every year, I host a different mixture of people, some cherished, longstanding friendships along with new people I’ve met over the year. I host this on a Saturday in early December, and pray through how I will bless those people all year long.
One year God had convicted me about this verse: “Do not let kindness and truth leave you; bind them around your neck, Write them on the tablet of your heart” (Proverbs 3:3, NASB). So I found an online charm maker and had charms made with the words kindness and truth. My friends wore those charms around their necks the following year. Other times I’ve given books that fit each friend’s particular year. Or I’ve given signs painted with Scripture or sayings that meld with each friend’s journey.
I set the table (usually for twelve people; we have a large table) and decorate it. I want this time for my friends to be a pull-away respite, a bright spot in a busy month. I bake homemade coffee cake and egg dishes and make sparkling drinks from Pellegrino and cranberry juice.
But the best part of the brunch comes when each of us takes a moment to share how our year went. Sometimes I ask what was their highpoint of the year, and their low. Other times, the sharing is more organic. But we all get a turn. Sometimes we’ll cry. Often times we’ll laugh. But through it all, we connect.
With this crazy-busy season upon us, this tradition of a friendship brunch has centered me, given me pause in the chaos, and reorients me toward the beautiful people God has strategically placed in my life.
What about you? Who has God placed in your path this year? How can you take a moment to bless them? Simply texting and telling your friend you’re thankful for her in your life will likely change the tenor of her day. Sending a quick card (or ecard) would bless her. Saying why you like her on her Facebook wall will show her you’re thinking about her.
Christmas is a time where we celebrate relationships with our families and friends, but it’s also a time where we herald God’s faithfulness to us in relationship. Look back over your year. How has God proven Himself faithful to you? What have been your highs and lows, and how has God intersected those? What people has He brought into your life? How has He grown you? Take some time to thank God for what He’s done. Though you can’t write on His Facebook page or throw Him a holiday brunch party, you can simply express how much He means to you.
After all, this is Christmas, the time we celebrate God’s audacious act of intersecting humankind, making a way for us to be redeemed and healed and freed.
Jesus, help me to celebrate You this season. Thank You for sending so many significant relationships my way this year. Give me insight as to how I can bless my friends in a tangible way. I want to be a thankful person, thankful not only for my friends and family, but for You and the gifts You give me.
My friendship brunch will be tomorrow! Watch for pictures!