Welcome to chapter five of our online bookclub!
This summer, we’ve been delving into Sally Clarkson’s book, Girls’ Club. (If you’ve been reading along with me, then you already know what a wonderful book this is!)
Thus far I’ve discovered (at least) two important things about myself:
- Cultivating personal health is a prerequisite for learning how to really love other people well.
- I stink at hosting book clubs!
Well, maybe the more gracious truth is that I find consistent blogging to be very challenging in this busy season of life.
I’ve been reading a lot this summer, as well as taking two different English classes; this blog grows much too silent when I have my nose buried in books!
If you’ve been following along on this sporadic journey, may I extend my heartfelt thanks? You are amazing!
And, really, Girls’ Club is such a fun and inspiring book.
—-> I hope you’re cracking the covers of this book this summer!
(I don’t have to remind you how important the habit of reading is, right?)
The message of Girls’ Club is too important to not share, in whatever small ways I can, with the people in my sphere of community and influence.
So we are tackling chapter five today, which happens to be one of my (many) favorite chapters of this book.
“Saturday Mornings: The Girls’ Club Prototype”
I find this chapter absolutely delightful!
In summary, chapter five is a model of how to live intentionally within community and friendships.
Specifically, chapter five paints an inspiring picture of how the Clarkson girls spent- and still often spend- their Saturday mornings.
In the Clarkson family, Sally initiated meaningful connection, conversations, and experiences often; Saturday mornings were especially dedicated to “Girls’ Club” times.
I do this often with my own two daughters, Amy and Emily, so reading the Clarkson girls’ thoughts and ideas on this topic was very exciting for me!
The older my girls grow- Amy is fifteen, and Emily will be thirteen in just a few days- the more enriching and important I find this “Girls’ Club” habit to be.
A Few Thoughts for Moms
If you’re a mother- especially a mom with daughters- there is so much to glean from this chapter.
One of my deepest takeaways from chapter five is Sally’s intentional pursuit of connection with her daughters.
Strong, healthy relationships do not “just happen,” even within a family.
The fact that I gave birth to two beautiful girls does not guarantee that I will have a close and meaningful relationship with them.
I have to cultivate connection “on purpose.”
I have to first make sure that I am growing into a healthy and mature woman myself, then I can intentionally invest in their hearts and our relationship.
For my friends with very young daughters, your baby girls are little “sponges” that will soak up (and, yes, demand!) your time, attention, and love.
Do what it takes to invest generously.
—> If I could relive the “little years” with my daughters, I would give more grace, expect less, and live more in the moments.
Of course, time only marches forward.
There is no “redoing” parts of my life as a mom; but there is always today to live well.
So much of this chapter is quotable!
This particular passage, from page eighty-one, jumped out at me:
When we are able to recognize that each person to whom we relate, each person with whom we seek to cultivate a friendship, is made in the image of God, revealing a facet of His beauty, our hearts are opened to that person in a profound way. All friendships begin with the fact of God’s great love; it is the origin of every other love. And as we foray into friendship, as we seek to relate and create connection in a difficult world, we do it in company with Christ, powered by His Spirit to initiate, to remain, to provide, to give.
“You are never alone in this great work of friendship; God is always first, loving you and filling you in such a way that you can reach out to others.”-Sarah Clarkson, Girls’ Club
For further reading on these topics of intentionally investing in healthy relationships- and making the most of Saturday mornings!– please refer to the following articles, podcasts, and links:
- 4 Things Loneliness Taught Me About Friendship (Kristy’s blog post)
- Cultivating Friendship With Teens (podcast with Sally Clarkson)
- Forging Friendships With Our Children (podcast with Sally Clarkson)
I hope you feel inspired and encouraged by Girls’ Club, chapter five, and this blog post!
If you find this post helpful, will you please hit a “like” and “share” button? Your engagement and sharing helps me out as a blogger more than you may know!
Are you reading Girls’ Club this summer?
What was your takeaway from chapter five?
And, just for fun: how can you cultivate a “girls club” experience this Saturday morning?
I’d love to hear about it!
Here’s to living & loving well-