Friday, March 16, 2012

Mismatched Friends

The Samaritan woman said to him, “You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?” (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.) John 4:9

“Hi, I’m Sonya.”  The words were simple enough.  But my life changed because of them.

At first glance, my friend Sonya and I don’t have much in common.  It wasn’t always that way.  When we first met that day when she took the time to talk to me, we both worked for the same Fortune 500 company.  Neither of us had children.  We became fast friends and had lunch together every day.  We volunteered together through a local women’s club, and socialized weekends with our husbands.  We were inseparable.

Before too long, Sonya had her first child.  Then she had her second.  By the time I had my first, she quickly followed with numbers three, four and five!  Finally I had my second, and a year later she had her sixth. 

Our parenting styles are very different.  She has six children, and I am content with two.  She homeschools, while I send my children to school.  She cooks organic, and bakes her own bread.  I cook occasionally, and frequent the McDonald’s drive thru. 

Would we have dismissed each other as “too different” to be friends if we had met as moms instead of co-workers? What would I have missed out on if we had? 

Sonya is the person who introduced me to Jesus, not just as a Savior, but as someone I could have a relationship with.  She was there for me to help me get through difficult times with my alcoholic mother, and encourage me through years of infertility.  I was there to support her through tough days of mothering six kids, and when her dad died unexpectedly.

I’m glad that we met before we were mothers, because I’m not sure I was confident enough in my own season of mothering a small child to be friends with someone who parented so differently. 

What boundaries do we set up in life that exclude people who are different than us? Jesus showed us an example of inclusion when he spoke to the woman at the well.  She was a Samaritan woman.  Jews, like Jesus, didn’t associate with Samaritans.  But Jesus not only spoke to her, but offered her eternal life, and revealed himself as the Savior of the world.

Because Jesus spoke to her, many of the Samaritans from her town came to believe, simply because of her testimony.  Her life was changed forever because he took time to talk to her. 

I’ve grown so much by experiencing life from Sonya’s point of view, and she has grown through mine.  We are different, but our love and respect for each other is the same.   Our friendship has lasted 18 years, and through many different seasons, and continues to grow.

Simply because Sonya took the time to talk to me my life was changed, for the better.  Simply because Jesus took the time to talk to the Samaritan woman her life was changed for the better.  Whose life can you change, simply by talking to and encouraging her today?  

Kelly Combs is a Christian wife, mom, writer and speaker. You can learn about Kelly by visiting her website at

Chatty Kelly

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The "Bad" People in Heaven

"Would you miss me if I die?" my eight year old asked me. I hated to consider the thought, but I encouraged her, "I would miss you forever. But I will probably die first. And we know we will see each other again, and be together forever in Heaven, so we don't have to miss each other anymore."

My daughter thought about that a bit, and then said, "But what if I'm bad? Then I won't go to heaven and we won't be together."  How do we all seem to default to that thinking? Bad people go to hell and good people go to heaven. Is it true?

While I don't want my daughter to do "bad" things, I explained to her what I believe is the truth. God loves her. Jesus died for her, and as long as she confesses with her mouth that Jesus is Lord, and believes in her heart that God raised him from the dead, she will be saved. (Romans 10:9)

Yes, her faith needs to be a live changing faith. But she will sin! And that sin will not separate her from God or keep her from heaven. Praise God! 

I am sinner, and I have done lots of "bad" things. I am repentant, so to God those things are gone. But I still did them, and the world could say I am "bad." Therefore, I am so thankful that God allows bad people like me into heaven.

There is a flip side to this story, however. And that is that plenty of "good" people go to hell.  There is great sadness in this. Unless God shows them mercy, there are plenty of people in the world that do good things, are kind, giving and loving, but do not believe in Jesus, and according to the Bible no one can come to God, except through Jesus. 

There will be "bad" people who go to heaven, and "good" people who go to hell. We can't judge who is bad or good by the standards of the world or even the standards of the Bible. The measuring stick is Jesus: Who loves him, and want to change their life to obey his commands. 

Keep living a life changing faith, so that you can show people the way to Heaven. 
It isn't their's their Savior.
Kelly Combs is a Christian wife, mom, writer and speaker. You can learn about Kelly by visiting her website at

Chatty Kelly

Monday, March 12, 2012

Clean House or Clean Heart

My husband's cell phone rang on the way home from church. It was his son, calling to ask if he could come over...and oh, by the way, he was bringing his girlfriend whom we hadn't met.  Immediately my mind went to the breakfast dishes piled in the kitchen sink. The family room was likely a mess too. We'd had a busy weekend, and I hadn't cleaned up the house.

As we got home from church, I rushed around wildly cleaning. As I went from room to room, picking up things and putting them away, loading the dishwasher, dusting, vacuuming, I became more and more annoyed. Everyone could see how hard I was working but no one was offering to help. Finally I finished, exhausted and irritated.

I went upstairs to change out of my church clothes. The irritation still raging, I decided I needed to pray. My house was clean, but my heart was dirty.  I sat down and began praying. Quickly God showed me the heart issue going on inside me. The reason I was the only one cleaning wildly is because I was the one who cared if the house was clean.  I was the one worried about being judged for a messy home.

Measuring my worth by the wrong standard...again! When will I learn? God gently whispered to my soul that I am His dearly beloved. That my worth came from Him alone, not from how clean my house is. I felt the anxiety leave my body. I was still God's beloved. I belong to Him. Why do I continue to need to be reminded?

"Tell me once again, who I am in you...who I am in you. Tell me, lest I forget, who I am in you, I belong to you."  - Jason Gray, Remind Me Who I Am

I am thankful for a God who continues to remind me of my worth in Him.

What do you do to keep reminding yourself that you belong to God?

Kelly Combs is a Christian wife, mom, writer and speaker. You can learn about Kelly by visiting her website at

Chatty Kelly