the other woman

My life has been forever changed by the other woman. She worked with me at our ministry in Africa. She was a close friend whom I’d known and loved for a long time. And when she and my husband chose to step into a relationship with each other, my entire life changed. Forever.

Since then, I’ve been deeply impacted by other other women. But in completely different ways.

Two of my closest friends have lived on the opposite side of my story. They were both someone else’s other woman.

I hadn’t even realized the divine paradox of our friendships until others asked me if it’s ever hard for me. That’s when I began to fully see and appreciate the beautiful uniqueness of what we have.

In all honesty, it isn’t weird for me. It isn’t difficult or hurtful to be friends with these women.

Because when I look at them, I don’t see a scarlet letter. I don’t hold their past against them. Nor do I hold against them their very-different present of restored marriages.

I respect, admire, and trust them.

When I look at them, I see amazing grace personified. They are living, breathing, huggable reflections of God’s relentless heart.

They’ve changed me. Forever.

Through their transparency in both their brokenness and their healing. Through their rich wisdom, borne from the deepest of heartache. Through their tenacity in doing the hard work of rebuilding trust and relationships.

Our lives are mirror images of each other---our histories uniquely similar, yet altogether different. And I am so grateful for them. It is such an incredible gift to be able to journey together with these women.

Without even a single word, they make me live more aware of my own need for grace, and they gently challenge me to extend it recklessly.

Just as it’s been extended to me.