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GIVEAWAY: Friendship, Sisters for a Journey

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Gwen Smith

March 10, 2017

Blog, Christian Living, Giveaways

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Happy friday, friends!

It’s time for a GIVEAWAY and a guest post by my sweet friend, JESSIE SENECA!! This Eastern Pennsylvania girl is something special, y’all. I knew the moment that we met that we would be friends. She’s just that type of woman. And she ooozes Jesus. Truly. There is a calm charm about her that draws you in, a spunky personality that makes you smile, and a humble sincerity that earns your trust right away.

I just know you are going to be blessed and challenged by what she has to share from her new book FRIENDSHIP, Sisters For a Journey. I had the honor of writing the foreword for the book, and now it is my honor to turn this page over to Jessie…

 

Remember the song, “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend,” most famously performed by Marilyn Monroe in the 1953 film Gentlemen Prefer Blondes?

The end of the song goes like this, “Diamonds! Diamonds! I don’t mean rhinestones!”

Regardless of your feelings toward the song, it does teach us a thing or two about relationships. We want the real thing and nothing short of it.

We desire real, authentic, and meaningful relationships. The kind you treasure; the kind that energize your soul.

When we translate that desire to our heavenly relationship with God, we experience an unspeakable security, which overflows into our earthly ones.

After a diamond is painstakingly cut and shaped to perfectly bounce light, the final step in its completion is to carefully polish it to its final level of shine. We want the real thing, not the imitation, in our walk with our friends and in our relationships. We can be the polish that encourages others to be all God has called them to be.

Sistering. Sisterhood, caring friends.

Sisterhood, done right, can be one of the best parts of our lives as women. We need these relationships. We want these relationships. We long for these relationships.

Without friends, you will not only fall, but you will become extremely lonely.

Two are good because you have a friend that can assist, but three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.

Sistering is a little like riding a triplet, a three-seater tandem bike. You have the captain—the person who sits on the front seat, who guides and directs—while the stoker, the person on the back seat assists in the ride. The stoker really has to trust the person captaining the bike, and the captain has to rely on a stoker who maintains a steady position and is responsive to the choices the captain makes. It is a team approach.

Tandem riding develops communication skills, builds trust, and cultivates respect for each other’s strengths.

I say a triplet tandem bike because, just as Ecclesiastes 4:12 tells us three are even better, so it is, as we ride through life. When you have Jesus Christ as a partner with two believing friends, you form an even stronger bond.

When Jesus is in the center of your relationship, He directs the ride and leads you in the direction that is best.

We certainly need to have our closest friends and family on the journey with us.

Sistering is two women coming together to share their hearts and lives and when they depart from their time together each one believes they were the one that got the greatest blessing.

I know, not all relationships turn out the way you hoped. I lived a couple myself.

But I want to encourage you. We all have these relationships. They are not fun and maybe you even wish they never happened. But when looking back on them, they may have been the best thing for me.

At the time, it seemed almost debilitating and a cause to stop ministry, work, or possibly living.

Yes, they have influenced me in one way or another. They have played into the woman I have become and the ministry God ordained.

My hope today is that you will come unveiled before God (2 Corinthians 3:18). You will be honest with Him, yourself, and those with whom He asks you to be authentic and become more aware of your existing valued friendships and the friendships in front of you; the ones you may not even be aware of yet. I hope you’ll look at your intentions with greater discernment and be more aware of the needs of those around you.

I also hope you will give God access to the most intimate part of your heart and trust Him with your emotions, desires, and hurts. If we do this, we will be ones that not only live by the Spirit, but walk by the Spirit as well (Galatians 5:25). Not only will you shine brighter, but you will encourage others to do the same.

 

CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR GIVEAWAY WINNER:
JULIE B!

 

THE BOOK

Friendship: Sisters for a Journey:  The ride through life is better with friends! Friendship, Sisters for a Journey will help you discover the secret to authentic friendship through meaningful and purposeful relationships. Sometimes it might look a little messy and other times glorious, but God uses all styles and seasons of friendships to grow and stretch us into better friends, sisters, mothers, daughters, aunts, grandmothers, and any other roles we fill. We are never beyond the age of learning more about one of the greatest gifts God has given us, Friendship. With discussion questions at the end of each chapter, biblical application, and real-life examples, this book will help you be the friend you desire to be.

 

MEET JESSIE SENECA

Jessica SenecaJessie Seneca is a national speaker, author, leadership trainer and the founder of More of Him Ministries and SHE Leads Leadership Conferences. She also works with LifeWay as their Northeast Simulcast Specialist and a frequent YOU Lead presenter. She has a passion to help women experience God’s Word for themselves as she encourages you to move into a “wholehearted” lifestyle, one devoted fully to God through retreats, conferences and her Bible studies.  Jessie and her husband, John live in Pennsylvania and have two young adult daughters. Most days you can find Jessie walking her two golden-doodles, Bella and Murphy while supporting John from the bleachers of the college softball field in her most recent role as the “coaches wife.”

Visit Jessie at www.moreofhimministries.org

 

 

 

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About Gwen Smith


Gwen Smith

I am an unashamed, imperfect worshiper of Jesus Christ. I cling to His goodness to cover my mess and purpose my days to live out the hope of the Gospel. It is my joy and passion to inspire women to live fully in grace and truth. I write books, devotions and songs. I speak. I sing. I worship. I post, pin and tweet. I am intensely in love with the Word of God and believe, wholeheartedly, that the Bible is divinely inspired truth.

 

101 responses to “GIVEAWAY: Friendship, Sisters for a Journey”

  1. We moved to new city, I miss my friends, I am going to a nice church, a family church, with good works, I am volunteer , joined book club, and camera club, Gods will answer the friend you can have a coffee with, talk, laugh and share our walks in Christ, the door has not been opened yet, but it will, I am retired. But life is good. darlene

  2. Lynn says:

    Friendship is such a gift, to be cherished.

  3. Sarah T. says:

    This book sounds amazing! I’m working my way through I Want It All and would love to include a friendship book to my devotional time.

  4. Natalie Panqueva says:

    I am always encouraged by your words, and to be brought together with other women, God is teaching me this, this year. We are not meant tobear our byrdens aline

  5. Candy says:

    I don’t know what I’d do without my best friend. She is the best!!

  6. Cindy says:

    My friends are some of the best people who are my great support.

  7. Darlene Dunlap says:

    Friendship/sisterhood is and continues to be an important part of my life. I only have 2-3 people in this category. No matter how long it’s been since we were together it’s like we was never apart. My dear sister friend’s husband, who is like a brother to me has been diagnosed with cancer. Just asking for prayer.

  8. Tammy Ricken says:

    This book sounds like the gardener’s guide to planting flowers of friendship in the garden of my life – something no girl can get enough of, certainly not me. Thanks for the chance to win this gift.

  9. Linda says:

    My friendship groups are so splintered, which results in none of them feeling really close, especially since my dearest friend moved to Texas two years ago. Raised an army brat, we moved a lot, so I was always leaving friends behind & making new ones – until the next move. I envy those who have known their best friend since childhood. I have a group of friends I teach with, another from my church, & another of women who participated in a divorce care for which volunteers were needed & I was available (I’m widowed). This all sounds sadder than it is, as I’m actually quite happy & content, but I do occasionally find myself wishing for a friend who overlapped the different areas of my life.

  10. This book sounds amazing. My best friend and I just parted ways because when push came to shove, we couldn’t make it. It has been heartbreaking. Now my main friends are my ladies I have met through my online Bible studies. Thanks for the chance to win this book. Sharing on social media now.

  11. Julie says:

    Heavenly Father, I give thanks to the friendships of your humble children you bring into my life. Thank you for guiding me to the friendships that you have for me.

  12. Anita Hill says:

    Am i the 3rd caller? YeS I won a wonderful gift. Thank you Gwen.I never ever win so being the correct caller is awesome. I look forward to my new book. GOD IS SO AMAZING .

  13. Toni says:

    You give such wonderful messages! I relate to this one very well. My friendships are golden when God is a part. We are never alone but with friends who love God we are never alone!

  14. Deirdre Thompson says:

    I love my friends and truly don’t know where I’d be without them!

  15. Julie B says:

    Gwen, shared on Facebook and tweeted on Twitter.

  16. Julie B says:

    It has always been hard for me to make friends. My sister, Jodie is my best friend.There are no women in my age range at Church, only older ladies.

  17. Friendships can make or break your life, so it seems! I’ve had friends that I have so cherished & have been so blessed by. Other ones that have broke my heart on many occassions. Friends are definitely needed in this life. I would be so blessed to receive this book.

  18. Babs says:

    I have a few friends I treasure. Some nearby others miles away or across the ocean. It’s hard to keep up with lots of people and I find it hard to be a friend to others when I am trying to make ends meet as single parent and keep connected with my four children. But I am very grateful for my friend, some which have come and gone in seasons but always helped me along the way.

  19. Victoria J. Shaffer says:

    There is something very unique and God-given within women that allows us to bond soul to soul with each other. And within that soulful bonding we are able to care for, edify, encourage and correct….all the while remaining sisters in Christ! Now that’s a Mystery the world can never understand! Lol!

  20. Kathy V says:

    The Lord gave me what I call my ‘Bussom’ friend. We did everything together. Because we were both single mothers we sat together in church, we called one another for emergency prayer as well as our twice weekly time of praying, one time on the phone and the other in person if you will. Our children were at one another’s homes, especially the girls, well she has four, I have one, plus two boys. Neither of us had money to have fun, we made our own fun with ourselves and our children. Having said all this she met a man, a godly man, they began dating and next thing I knew she told me they were marring. I was so happy for her because she was so happy. I helped plan her wedding and did the decorating, as well as some of the food. It was great. At first we didn’t talk much, I thought I should wait a short time and then start up our relationship up again as the Lord lead. I went with the flow. Sadly, at least for me, the friendship fizzled out after seven years. She stopped returning calls, I never saw her because she now went to her husbands church. It was a great great loss for me.
    The Lord gave me a new ‘bussom’ friend, everything was such a blessing. She too was a single mother, all girls also. Then she too got married and had another child. I saw them at church, but of course it wasn’t the same because she now had a new best friend in her life. Painfully that didn’t include me.
    I had other friends but none ‘bussom’. I sought the Lord for this new friend and it seemed that the answer was for the time no or wait. I ended up moving quite a few cities away which meant changing churches.
    I had gone to my previous fellowship seventeen years, it was a very difficult time for me. I would call my friends and it seemed and felt like they didn’t have time for me.
    I sought the Lord for even one friend. I started thinking that perhaps I had used my friends in place of a special relationship with my Savior. So I really concentrated on growing my life with Him. With joy, more time in prayer, in study, in involvement in my new church home. Every time I met a new woman and had that feeling that we could be friends, even ‘bussom’ friends I would seek the Lord. Nothing came to fruition. I have been in this new city almost eight years and have been on a roller coaster through many things.
    I changed churches a few times until I thought I was as close to home as I could get. Again as I felt the Lord might be showing me who would be my friend, I would seek Him but it never happened. I’m now almost afraid to think I could have a close relationship with another woman.
    I started a new Bible study in January called ‘Heart to Heart’, I’m sure you’ve heard of it. We are going through a book on hearing the Voice of the Lord. This past February one of the women shared about how hungry she is for a friend. I cried, mostly inside. After the study I asked her for her number, that was two weeks ago and I haven’t called her yet. Part out of fear and mostly because I was in the process of having a third surgery since Dec. 20. The first two were emergencies and the third, just a few days ago, was to add to the second surgery.
    Throughout these years without a close friend here on earth I keep thinking it’s my fault and have been gun shy. Doing more praying and wishing than being active in the pursuit of a friend because it ends up leading nowhere or with me crying.
    Reading about this book on friendship I can’t help but wonder if the Lord is leading me to read this as I seek a friendship with this woman who is also hungry for a friend.
    I know I’ve written a lot here and hope you don’t mind. I ask that all of you that read this would pray for me and this new friend , who I can’t help believe He has for me to trust in Him to give me.

  21. Jennifer Griffis says:

    I have been blessed, mainly through Facebook, with a few sisters who have come into my life for a season/seasons. These are the closest relationships I have ever had (except for the one I share with Jesus). We are vulnerable, open, often hurting, sharing crises, God’s word, tears and laughter. One thing we know: God has brought us together for a purpose, for however long that may be. And this I know: I will continue to be blessed by these women for the rest of my life.

  22. Roxy Rowe says:

    As Christians, as women we will always be sisters in Christ on our journey to eternal life. I just had a friend in Christ pass away last night. We laughed together, shared life together and prayed for each other. I know she is not in anymore pain! Thank you for sisterhood. You are a blessing! ❤🌹

  23. maryann says:

    Sisters for a Journey sounds like a book to read. I have the best BFF ever, childhood friends, and miles apart do not separate true friends…. Blessings

  24. Cathy Craig says:

    Friends are a Blessing from God.

  25. Crystal N. says:

    This is a great blog post. Thank you. Sometimes you are the friend for life, sometimes you’re the one getting hurt & sometimes you’re the one doing the hurting, but God…God is the strengthener, restorer & healer.

  26. Patricia Swayne says:

    I don’t have many females but the few I have are like Sisters to me and not just friends. Because I am homebound we see each other via social media time those who are out of town. We talk about our faith,trust and belief in our Lord Jesus Christ how wonderful he is. That’s my church except for radio and television. I would truly love to have this book to learn how to enrich my Sisterhood and more about Jesus love. You know he said that where there are two or three together that that can be worshipping him together.

    . Thank you Sincerely
    . Patricia Swayne

  27. peggy brollier says:

    this would be an awesome book to win, i’m new in trying to learn as much as i can, study the bible as much as possible. i have a page on fb for my sisters and try yo post uplifting words, peaceful posts of God etc. this would be awesome to have… thank you, peggy

  28. Kelli C says:

    Thank you for this opportunity.

  29. LisaB says:

    This sounds like a book full of good advice. Good friends are hard to find and even harder to keep.

  30. Trish Kalas says:

    John 15:15…”I have called you friends…” relationships based on the principles of God’s word, are eternal. I have several biological sisters, not to define as friends, as granted to a true relationship as friends as I believe takes nothing for granted when situations and circumstances that we are faced with can be resolved and given hope with just honest agreement, fellowship and prayer. It’s a journey, and not everyone wants the intimacy of friendship and it’s truths. I look forward to reading Jessica’s impression.

  31. Cynthia says:

    I know have have a few true friends that hold me accountable and don’t sugar coat things. Those are true friends. I would love to read this book.

  32. Julie Watson says:

    So thankful for the girlfriends God has brought into my life and your devotional today reminding of the importance of Christian friendships.

  33. Christina Arthur says:

    I’d love to get a copy of this book. It sounds like a great read. God bless.

  34. Danielle Geissinger says:

    This looks like it would be such an awesome book to read and share with a friend!

  35. Danielle Geissinger says:

    This looks like it would be such an awesome book to read and share with a friend!

  36. Noelle says:

    Love the devotional and excited about the bookthank u for giving us this opportunity to win.shared on fb.thank u for doing this for us

  37. Marcia Neal says:

    What wonderful timing! I’ve been struggling with finding true Christian friends since my move 5 years ago. I know, sad. I need help! I need this book!!! ☺

  38. Noelle says:

    Love the devotional and excited about the bookthank u for giving us this opportunity to win.shared on fb

  39. Mary Christopher says:

    I loved the devotion and I know I would love to read the book as well! Thank you!

  40. Bev says:

    As a former pastor’s wife, genuine friendships were difficult to find… which is sad to say when in the church it should be a natural and safe place to find and cultivate! Friendships that are authentic and deep are a cherished gift that bring life…. I desire more of what God has intended! Would be delighted to read this book.

  41. Jolinda says:

    I would so love to win this book

  42. Terri Shands says:

    I’m in need of friend ship. I’ve been living alone for quite some time & I should learn some coping skills.

  43. Vonnie Kronk says:

    Would love to get this book & love the cover too! Riding a bike is something I will be doing soon!

  44. Connie says:

    Amen. I miss my girlfriends.

  45. Christina Smith says:

    I truly cherish my two TRUE sisterhood friendships I have right now and the fact that they are strengthened even more with the presence of God. I have lost several friendships due to my chronic illnesses and while I’ve read many articles and chronic illness support groups who say this is common, I’m still having a hard time dealing with it; as some of these friends were quite special to me and I thought I was to them as well. So, I would love the opportunity to read more of what Ms. Seneca has written in her book. 💙🦋💙

    • Bless you, dear sister. I am sorry about your chronic illness and understand where you are as I dealt with Cushings Syndrome, myself.
      But be thankful for those who have hung in there with you through it all….These are true friends. And fix your eyes on Jesus (Hebrews 12:2)

  46. Steven says:

    Joy comes in the morning!

  47. joy says:

    yes this would be great for our womens group

  48. Being one who has been truly blessed with a wonderful friend, a true sister in the Lord, I am looking forward to reading this new book. I want to share it with everyone I know in hopes they too may find the kind of friendship the Lord gave to me.
    In Christ Jesus….Jackie

  49. Debbie says:

    This sounds like the perfect book to share with my sister in Christ

  50. Lauryn says:

    I appreciate you touching on this. I’ve had friendships that worked really well and others that, well, didn’t. It’s hard but not impossible. Thanks for the encouragement!

  51. Velvet says:

    Yes, please. I want to read more about this journey of friendships.

  52. Velvet says:

    Yes, please. I want to learn more about the journey of friendships.

  53. Mabry Bell says:

    Friends are SUCH important parts of our lives! I would love to win a copy of this book!

  54. Yes, please. I would like to read more.

  55. Missy Smith says:

    What a wonderfully enduring devotion!
    I’m so very thankful for the friendships I have. God is truly amazing when He brings two women toget her at one point in their life with maybe one or two things in common, and then layer on in life, sometimes much later you see another huge relationship that had intended. He knows who we need on our journey of life. And sees way beyond the first day we met. I have a very dear and cherished relationship like that. We both suffered a tragic loss in our life. Min was in 2014, and hers just this last year 2016. Only God know the storm we were both going to walk into. And it shows me who He can work through my storm, to be able to encourage and love on my dear friend through hers. Just beyond amazing & AWEsome!!

    Thank you for this beautiful message today!

  56. Angie Carter says:

    my best friend committed suicide 9 days ago.. how do I go on without her?
    I need this book.

  57. Velvet Sommer says:

    Friendships are vital to life and ministry. I would love to read more about the journey.

  58. Friendships and relationships are vital to living a full life. I would love to read more about the journey of friendships.

  59. Kim Fuqua says:

    This looks amazing and encouraging! It gives me insight on my approach

  60. Debbie says:

    Would love to win the book. Thanks for all you do

  61. Debbie says:

    Would love to win the book. Thanks for all you do

  62. Elaine Santiago says:

    You have peaked my interest!

    Would love to read more!

    Elaine

  63. Roylan Sullivan says:

    REAL friendship is probably the most valuable thing a girl has !! Thanks!

  64. Shenetta Osei says:

    “Friends are essential to the soul”. This is especially true for Belivers.

  65. MarySue Everett says:

    Beautifully written. May I be that friend .

  66. Tammy Dyer says:

    I went to church and said I believed growing up, but I didn’t have the faith. After my divorce, my husband of 10 years decided that he and my best friend were a better fit. 2 families that grew and spent time together torn to pieces! My 2 best friends betrayed me in one move. I don’t forgive myself of blame… I wasn’t being the wife I should have been either, but I was faithful and trying! I took my antidepressants…the bottle.. But God had other plans.
    A few years of struggling with bars, men, self medicating took me to my new Christian friend Gail…. Who had that childlike faith…. That peaceful walk with Jesus. I wanted that and Gail helped me find it! I went to her church and then continued growing in faith in the past 10 years. We have changed roles as supporter/supportee at times but that sisterhood is what made the difference!
    We use our faith, prayer and God’s Word to support each other.
    I would love this book to give to God’s chosen sister to me…. Gail.

    • Thanks, Tammy for your vulnerability and love for Jesus.
      Gail seems like a special friend for a lifetime.
      As Gwen so beautifully sings, He turns our brokeness into Beautiful.

  67. ️Jenn Perry says:

    Would love to win this book! Have a blessed day! 💖

  68. Bennie Allen says:

    I hope I win the book!!

  69. Jackie Sponagle says:

    Please. This is exactly what I need right now.

  70. Lisa Harness says:

    I would love to read this one!! I have Sister friends God has blessed me with. Thank you!

  71. M. L. Sharron says:

    I never realized how important having a friend was until my “bestie” moved away. I miss her dearly. ❤

  72. LaDawn Ollis says:

    Jesus is a girl’s best friend! 😍

  73. Barbara Davis says:

    Sister’s on Christ are the best. Looking foreard to reading this one

  74. Wally Clark says:

    Friends are SO important, the excerpt is great, I’m sure the rest of the book is too!

  75. sheila says:

    I really need this type of encouragement right now. I’m a stay at home mom of 3 boys. I feel so alone right now. I know my friendships are so important but I really struggle with juggling mom and wife responsibilitis. I miss my friends so much. I pray every day God will guide me in this area and I will have the wisdom to see the friendships I need to invest in. I am looking forward to insight into will gain from your book. Thank you

  76. Teri Wall says:

    I would love to win this book. It would be awesome to be able to do a book share with all of my heart sisters, where we each read it and passed it along to the next heart sister. <3
    Thank you for the giveaway!

    • HI TERRI,
      It is nice to meet you!
      Yes, this is the perfect book for a small group discussion. There are discussion questions in the back of the book to guide you trhough the discussion.
      Your friends will love it!
      XOXO
      Jessie

  77. If I am to win this book then I will..if not the Lord will find another way for me to get it :))) I wish you all a wonderful week end !!

  78. Elaine Tomasello says:

    Wonderful article! Sisters! I like that!

    God bless you!

  79. Susan Roach says:

    This is a great book! I met Jessie last year at a women’s retreat that she was the mcee for Gwen who was the main speaker. Jessies passion for the Lord is very contagious. She is genuine and wants to help others gain a closer relationship with God. Grab a cup of coffee and start reading!

  80. Tamara says:

    I love my friends! Thank you God for the blessing of them. they pray for me and love me unconditionally no matter how MANY times I mess up!

  81. I enjoyed reading some of the book this morning. Just what I needed! I’ve been hurt in life , so it’s hard for me to get close to those outside my family.

  82. Jean Storey says:

    I can’t wait to read this book and share it with my friends!

  83. Tammy says:

    My Sisters led me to Christ which saved my life!!

  84. Blanche Henry says:

    I am 62 years old and the older I get the more I really set out each day to make friends. It is is so special to meet new friends and share the good news. I want to read this great book. I think I need it in and for my life. A friend shows she is friendly so I need a little help. Friends are several and gold. I am a friend
    Of God. Bless you!

  85. Ann says:

    What a beautiful description of friendship

  86. Lynda says:

    Sisters!! Amen!

  87. Cory Segrue says:

    My Bible study girls and I LOVE Girlfriends in God! That’s who we are!! Thank You for your ministry!

  88. JOAN L HORICK says:

    Would love to win. I am slowly developing deeper friendships with other women, which at times has been hard for me because of previous experiences.

  89. Rusty Westmoreland says:

    It is always important to have friends that you can trust not only to confide in but also who will help hold us accountable. I’m praying that GOD will always use me to be that friend to others. In Christ’s love Miss Rusty

  90. Lori says:

    I can’t wait to read this one!!!!

  91. Mady says:

    Friendship is important, sometimes hard to find.

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