“The quality of our lives,” stated my pastor during a recent sermon, “is determined by the quality of our relationships.” Nothing could be truer. Good friends and loving family are like islands in the fast-moving streams of life. They provide a place where we can temporarily dock from our duties, shuck off our shoes, and wiggle our toes in the warm sand of companionship. I call them “featherbed friends,” because they provide us with a soft place to land. How restoring it can be when we make room in our lives for those who support, encourage, and lift our spirits!
Unfortunately, not every relationship will be as restful. We all know those as well who, whether consciously or unconsciously, drain us dry if we let them. Somehow in our search for more respites during the daily rigors, we must learn to differentiate between the two, inviting more time in the first even as we learn to limit or, in some cases eliminate the latter.
The reality is that there will be only a few choice comrades throughout a lifetime who truly care and understand unconditionally enough to stay the course. I can tell you from experience that you can be the most popular person on the block—one with a Facebook full of friends—but very few real and restful ones. Likewise, you can spend your life constantly surrounded...continue
These days Judi is a busy author and motivational speaker for retreats, seminars and workshops. She has published numerous other articles, poems and essays, both religious and secular. Her six books are all non-fiction works. Prodigal In The Parsonage: Encouragement for Ministry Leaders Whose Child Rejects Faith is written from personal experience and provides hopeful, helpful and heartwarming insights for parents, especially those in ministry, who are walking the prodigal pathway. Simple Seasons: Little Lessons for Large Living, is a devotional featuring a compilation of her articles from Woman's Touch Magazine. It All Comes Out In The Wash: Sorting Through Priorities When Your Load Is Out of Balance, weaves a wash-day theme that helps women Gain the knowledge to help turn the Tide in bringing their spiritual lives and relationships back into balance. True North: Staying on Course Through Life's Changing Circumstances, employs her experiences living in a remote Alaskan village to create an enjoyable journey, helping the reader find faith and footing whatever direction life takes. Camp Gramma: Putting Down Spiritual Stakes for Your Grandchildren combines personal examples with practical helps to impart insight, wisdom and the tools for embracing modern-day grandparenthood. Everyday Sabbath: The Art of Real Life Rest explores the foundational principles God used in establishing Sabbath rest and illustrates practical ways to insert Sabbath rest into your daily routine. Judi and her husband Jim are recently retired district superintendents of the Northern California-Nevada District.