In the past few months, Taylor Swift has basically redefined what it means to be a girlfriend.
She showed up at the VMAs with her “Girl Squad” all decked out and loving each other, holding hands on the red carpet, and hanging out at the after party.

(That’s basically exactly what I look like when I hang out with my friends…)

Taylor has made the “girl squad” a thing… something people aspire to be. Having a squad – a crew of friends that hang out and have a great time and have each others’ back – seems to be the “in” thing right now.
(Don’t believe me?  Just search the hashtag #squadgoals and you’ll see what I mean.)

The more I hear about squads and the more people talk about Taylor’s friends, the more I realize my own #squadgoal has been met by a most unexpected source… my book club.
I know what you’re thinking.  No way.
Squads have to be made up of fancy famous people.  That’s what Taylor has taught us!
And really, if ten years ago, someone had told me that a BOOK CLUB would impact my life more profoundly than any other group of people outside of my family and God, I would have called shenanigans.
But instead, that very thing has happened.
I’ve been a part of my book club for about 8 years.  And sure, for the first couple of years, it was a great way to talk about good books, drink wine, and check in with like-minded ladies.
But somewhere along the line, something changed.  We became a squad.
And even better than a squad, because instead of walking the red carpet together, we sit on couches in sweatpants and confess our struggles to each other and celebrate our joys with one another.
Yes we still read books, and yes we still talk about them monthly, but somehow we’ve become more than just a book club.

Last week, we had a book club retreat.
It wasn’t fancy.
We were at someone’s house. Not a hotel or retreat center or cabin.
We didn’t even read a book before we met.
But oh man.  It was holy.
So SO holy.
Yes, we told stories, and ate good food, and drank wine,played games, laughed hard, and stayed up too late, but in the midst of the fun, we created some holy ground.
One night, we spent four hours taking turns telling each one why they are a masterpiece.
FOUR HOURS you guys.
It was incredible.
One by one, we singled out each woman and shared why we love her, honor who she is, respect her, and why she is a masterpiece of God’s creation.
I have to say, I have never been a part of something so profound in my whole life.
As a mother, wife, and pastor, I’ve been privileged and honored to be a part of a lot of profound and holy moments.
And now, five days later, it is STILL feeding me.
Still filling my soul.
Not only the words that were spoken to me, but also the words spoken by others for everyone else too.
Holy Ground I tell you.

And each and every time I think of those four hours of amazingness, as I again feel the glow of love and a full heart, I wonder what the world might be like if more of us practiced this as a part of our daily lives.
What if we looked at our own “Squads”: our friends, our families, our communities, and spoke words of love and why we see them as a masterpiece?
And not only that – but why don’t we do this ever?
Why do we wait until at funerals and around hospital beds to speak these kinds of truths into people’s lives?
I know this was profound because it never happens, but WHY DOESN’T IT EVER HAPPEN?!
Can you imagine what our squads would be like if we just did this always?

Let me tell you – the things I thought people might say about me?  I wasn’t even close.
And the things I say about myself?  They were even further away from what I heard spoken to me.
I’m not alone in needing these kinds of words.
10 other women weeping for four hours tell me so.
The people in your life need it too.
I KNOW they do.
And you have something to say to each of them.
You can look at them and tell them they are a masterpiece.
That God’s fingerprints are all over them.
And when you look at them, you see ____________________…
And then go.
Do it.
Right now.
Don’t put it off.
Create a holy moment with the ones you love.
Your squad will never be the same.
And neither will you.


One thought on “You are a Masterpiece. (Or, why my book club is better than Taylor’s Squad)

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