Ahhh, the web of lies we weave… If you’ve ever thrown a surprise party for that special someone, you know you begin with just one teensy-weensy white lie, which leads to another, and another, quickly mushrooming-n-multiplying until you have no idea WHO you told what.
My friend Michelle and I miraculously pulled off a colossal surprise party for our husbands, Mark and John. At the time, lo these many years ago, they were turning the big 4-0.
We were blessed with generous friends who offered their company’s facility for the venue. We created “mock” invitations which invited ourselves to a black tie pre-Derby party. We feigned excitement over dressing up for the party while our husbands groaned over donning tuxes.
The “real” invitations asked our friends to come to a surprise party for Mark and John and the dress code was casual. The guys fell for it, hook-line-and-sinker. Thus the birthday boys stood out just a tad in their tuxedos! The surprise party was a success and as they say, “a good time was had by all”…
Everybody loves a good party. We all know someone, who even in regular settings, is the “life of the party”. Just off the top of my head I can name three of my friends who I seek out on a regular basis simply to soak in their life-of-the-party-positive-attitudes.
For the past several weeks, we’ve learned about all kinds of “chicks” from Holly Wagner and her fun book, God Chicks—Living Life as a 21st Century Woman. (If you’ve missed the earlier ones, you can click on these to learn more: Just-B-U, Princess, Warrior, Champion, and Friend) Holly’s encouraging style shows us God created us to be ALL of these kinds of chicks.
This week we’ll learn three tips on how to be a Party Chick. Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “It is a happy talent to know how to play.” Holly encourages us in this chapter to love life. She reminds us, “Jesus told His followers that He came to bring life…not death or destruction…but life.
The word Jesus used for ‘life’ is the Greek word zoe. This word implies more than the breathe-in, breathe-out kind of life…meaning abundant, overflowing, rich, and plentiful life!”
Tip #1: Party Chicks live life with passion. “We should be celebrating the life we have been given…not just trudging thru’ the days…” Sigh. I know this. But, some days I just don’t feel like it. You?
I don’t want to walk the dog. I don’t want to iron. (Oh, we may just spend some time on that “hot” subject down the road….) I don’t want to straighten my desk. (Do NOT ask my husband about “our” desk!) And I really, really, REALLY don’t want to cook!
Holly doesn’t let up on us, she digs deeper…. “We are given the moment called now. And this moment will not come again. We are to live each moment. Time then becomes our responsibility. We are given now only once.”
“What are you doing with your now moment?” Truthfully, I wanted to leave that little question out, but… we’re in this together! Let’s pray that the Lord will open our eyes to live in the now moment, as in right now.
Tip #2 – Party Chicks are joyful. They choose “happy” in the midst of their circumstances. I know, this is tough too. Believe it or not, an overwhelming amount of research has proven that if you’ll just count your blessings, listing a few each day, your attitude, your health, and your relationships will all improve.
Best resource to turn your attitude right side up: Ann Voskamp’s One Thousand Gifts –A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are. I double-dog-dare you to try it! Don’t forget she’s coming to Louisville for the North American Christian Convention and will be speaking at the Ladies’ Luncheon, and teaching a workshop on blogging Thursday, July 11th! (www.gotonacc.org ) You do NOT want to miss the chance to hear her! (For a taste of her Gospel-laced wisdom, click on Magnificent Manifesto in Minneapolis… and visit her website: www.aholyexperience.com )
Philippians 4:8-9 is an excellent challenge for all of us from the apostle Paul: “Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received, or learned from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” (NIV)
John and I were blessed a few years ago to hear Zig Ziglar speak about the above Scripture. He used it to warn us about the “G-I-G-O” method. He said, “If you put garbage into your mind, garbage will come out of your mouth or worse, into your lifestyle…Garbage in, garbage out…”
But… if you make a concerted effort to filter what goes into your mind, thinking on things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, praiseworthy, THEN look at the promise in that Scripture, “the God of peace WILL be with you.”
Tip #3: A Party Chick’s words bring life. Proverbs 18:21a says, “The tongue has the power of life and death…”(NIV)
Holly makes an eye-opening point: “See the good…Be the encourager…Do NOT be the girl who is a master at life-liposuction…sucking ALL the life out of someone.” (Think blood-sucking leech! This goes right back to last week’s post about Healthy or Unhealthy Friendships…)
Polar opposite from those lovely leeches, let’s camp on encouragement. It has such a ripple effect. Holly reminds us, “There is power in encouragement. It is a gift that can change lives.”
Florence Littauer wrote a beautiful book called, Silver Boxes—The Gift of Encouragement. It is all about the words we speak and their influence on others. It is based on Ephesians 4:29, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”
Holly teaches, “The word encourage means ‘to put courage in’, and courage means ‘facing danger in spite of fear.’ As we encourage people, we are saying, ‘Keep going! You can do it!’”
To add icing to our party cake, on top of encouraging others, let’s throw in a little laughter. Proverbs 15:13 in the NCV says, “A happy heart is like good medicine.” (We talked about the benefits of laughter in the post Get Over the Guilt –Grab a Nap…from Feb. 13..)
My three friends I mentioned earlier, who are life-of-the-party-positive-attitude girls, ALL love to laugh. They make laughter seem effortless. Their outlook on life is contagiously optimistic.
Nicholas De Chamfort said, “The most wasted of all days is that during which one has not laughed.” Let’s all go out and find something or someone who’s funny and be the best Party Chick God has called us to be! May God be glorified.
‘Til next time!
(This post is dedicated to my three Party Chick friends, whom you’ve heard me talk about before, and will again soon: Nancy Aguiar, Jane Chilton and Gwen Paten. They lift my spirit every single time I’m around them and THAT, my friends, is worth a million bucks.)