I looked at the table and gave a little shudder. I saw the tub of butter, bread....in a bag, and mismatched bowls. My deck was not cleaned up. A squirt gun lay beside my left foot and my flowers were not where I wanted them to be placed.
Its funny how things pick up momentum. I had invited my friend, whose husband is in law school, and her two small children over for dinner. She was wanting to talk preschool and buying a new house. I thought that the kids could play together in the backyard while we chatted.
Then I realized that one of my best friends, who had a brand new baby and toddler, was going to be alone due to hubs golf night. "Why don't you come over for dinner....the more the merrier!" I proclaimed.
Going out to the mailbox before I started to fix dinner, I ran into my good friend and neighbor. She had just gotten back from vacation and her hubbie was working late....you know that a invitation followed!
That is how my lonely night turned into a mama and kids dinner party. It seemed like a good idea at the time. Till I opened my fridge. I had this and that to fix. Nothing impressive to be sure. Chicken tenders for the kids and a simple pasta for the mamas.
Nothing was organized. Nothing matched.
Except our hearts on my messy back deck.
We laughed and watched our kids run around. (Mine half naked. I am so proud.) We talked and then slipped out for a long walk to get ice cream.
The dirty dishes sat in my sink and I never blinked an eye. I was watching my little lick her cone with such delight.
We all mentioned how this night went by so much faster and with more joy then if we were all in our own homes eating by ourselves.
It wasn't till after I had put the kids in bed that I realized that I was the one filled with joy. In trying to be a blessing to my friends, my sisters, they had blessed me.
It wasn't the dinner that I had wanted to fix, the presentation or even the setting. I could have chosen to run around and tried to make things perfect.
But I would have missed all those great conversations and laughs.
Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work; If one falls down, his friend can help him up.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 NIV