it pays to know people {day 1 of 31}

But not for the reasons you might think.

(Hi, I’m Marla, and I’m linking up with all kinds of awesome people doing 31 straight days of crazy-cool stuff.)

Most of us are annoyed by name-droppers or people who get things they don’t deserve just because they know someone with clout. I’m not talking about that.

I’m talking about this:

Hey, friend-Gail-I-met-on-the-internet. You live in Kentucky, and my friend Krista lives in Kentucky. You have 3 kids and she has 3 kids. You’re a pastor’s wife and she’s a pastor’s wife. I should totally hook you two up! (And I did. So much fun.)

Or hey, internet-turned-real-life-friend-Krysten-who-loves-India. You should totally meet my friend Delaine who also loves India. You two would have so much to talk about! Oh, you’re going to meet for lunch? Awesome sauce!

And then there’s the friend who thought her baby might be born with Down syndrome (he wasn’t), and I introduced her to another sweet friend who has the most beautiful little boy with DS. Encouraging words exchanged and a new friendship formed.

And the friend who was helping someone flee a violent situation in her hometown, and I knew someone who lived in the exact city/state she where she needed to take refuge. She stayed with my friend and her family until the danger had passed.

And the friend who is waiting on her unfaithful husband to come home, because that’s what God has told her to do. I just had the privilege of introducing her to a friend who waited on her husband for SIX years. He recently came back home, and they’re a family again. A beautiful, happy, give-God-the-glory family.


I have a mental list going of the stuff that lights my fire. Things that, when I do them, I feel God’s pleasure. Loving the poor. Rescuing the oppressed. Helping women find that sweet spot where their passion and God’s passion meet. Making people feel valuable.


Here’s the thing. In my “line of work,” I meet a lot a lot of people. And the tough part about what I do (writing, speaking, traveling, what have you) is that I just can’t be everything that people need/want me to be all the time.


I can connect them to others. And honestly? That brings me more joy than if I helped them myself.

Question for you: Do you have a connection story? Two someones you helped connect (or someone that connected you with someone else)? Or maybe you NEED a connection story. You’re looking for someone who can meet a need you’ve got.

I’d love to hear your story or play matchmaker for you. Let me know how I can help!

24 thoughts on “it pays to know people {day 1 of 31}

  1. Risha

    A young woman I’ve known for 20 years (she was a toddler, I was a preteen) who I also had the privilege of having as a student gave birth earlier this year to her first baby, a boy, at 23w4d gestation. She had been bed-ridden for 10 days fighting desperately to keep the baby inside her after her body decided to deliver the baby much too early. He was born and encountered a number of the typical obstacles and problems of a micropreemie, including brain bleeds, lung disease and life-threatening infections. When he was just a few weeks old, I contacted a friend of mine from college who gave birth to her youngest child at 28 weeks and has endured the hardships of a very sick child. My college friend contacted this new mom, and they were able to form a virtual friendship of encouragement, empathy and prayer. After a few months of virtual friendship, they were able to meet face-to-face (another really amazing thing because they both happened to travel to the same area of the country at the same time!), and my college friend introduced her preemie baby to them who is now a beautiful (BIG) 2yo boy! It was such a blessing to me to see this friendship develop, during a time when I felt like there was nothing else I could do to help this young first-time mom with a baby in such a scary situation.

    By the way, the baby born ealier this year came home from the hospital this summer and is doing pretty well. He still has some obstacles and challenges the he will face, but his life is a testimony of God’s healing power, and it’s been an honor to see his parents give ALL glory to God.

  2. Ben

    This post (and comment thread) are simply dripping with awesomeness! It’s fantastic!!

    It takes the usefulness of blogs (and the ‘Once Upon the Internet’ concept) to a whole new level. So often one sees arguments on Facebook and ‘comment wars’ on YouTube that just make a mess of everything. It’s so exciting seeing comments used to not only compliment the post, but also make real connections and very likely lasting differences in people’s lives.

    I never thought I’d see Blogs / The Internet used in this fashion before. It’s just the epiphany of all-things-cool!

  3. Jeanine

    My son recently found a job in his field of study (chemistry) right here in our county after looking for 18 months, all because a friend from church told him about the job opening where she works. This was before the job was posted, and she also gave him a good reference, which was invaluable. We will always be grateful to her!

    BTW, I am thankful that I heard about you from Megan of Sortacrunchy. I so enjoy your blog and your heart! I just remembered that I sent you a book via Amazon that I really enjoyed reading this year. It’s called Surprised By Oxford, and you may have already received it. I just kept thinking of you as I read it and thought you would enjoy it. I would love to hear what you think about it after you read it. It’s an amazing story of one person’s pursuit by our gracious God, and it’s also your favorite color – cornflower blue!

    1. Jennifer

      Umm… I know someone there. 🙂 And she’s a mom to twin boys as well! (Well, she’s a mom to five boys in all, ranging from 14 to 3, I think.) Her name is Erin, and she’s the most precious homeschooling, mission-minded, Jesus-loving woman ever. I would love to connect the two of you, if that’s something that would help you.

      1. Jen Hanson

        AHH!! That would be amazing. I would love to find another mission-minded twin mom in The Springs.

        Jennifer connects Jen The Twin Mama with another Twin Mama. Perfect.

  4. Melissa

    Well my husband and I were a connection story. One of my good friends from high school ended up being roommates with my now husband, thought we would make a good match, introduced us and the rest is history.

    But do you have anyone you could connect me with now in the Milwaukee area? Bonus if they’re also a mom double bonus if they also have a heart for helping people. Since I had my awesome little guy so young (which I don’t mind) not of a lot of my friends have kids yet so I don’t have very many mom friends and I would appreciate some more. My friends from college are just in such a different life stage than I am.

  5. Sarah Farish

    I don’t have a connection story, but I’d love to be connected with someone who needs hope for her marriage. My marriage has survived quite a bit, including affairs. Many times I thought…I am giving up! But, God pressed upon me to honor my vows, and I have stayed. My marriage is the best it has ever been, and I’d love to connect with someone who’s been in a similar “boat.” In many ways, I’m still recovering – I think I always will be – but I am redeemed thanks to Jesus. My husband are redeemed thanks to Jesus.

    I would love to find someone who is recovering too…or who is just beginning. Perhaps I could encourage her and her encourage me! THANKS so much for being you, Marla:)

  6. ellen

    Always listen to the leading of the Holy Spirit — my daughter went to Mozambique – and met 2 of her now best friends – God knows!!

  7. Krysten

    You are awesome! And it’s only been a few FB messages back and forth so far, but I love Delaine already!

    (People, Marla is GOOD at this hooking-friends-up-who-have-common-loves/interests/life situations-thing!)

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