About the Author

Deidra is a national speaker and the author of Every Little Thing: Making a World of Difference Right Where You Are, and One: Unity in a Divided World. Follow Deidra on Instagram @deidrariggs

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  1. What a wonderful surprise it was bumping into your blog at 6am!
    I had just made my coffee and was going through my list of blogs to read and noticed a link at Lisa Leonard’s blog to you.
    Not sure how I going to get the kids to school, there is so much to read and catch up!
    I also had a similar experience. I met an online school friend. She used the live in Alaska, I lost contact with her and years later she found be in one of these social websites. She had moved to upper NY State and we were just 4 hours apart.
    I packed my kids and went down for a two day visit. I was very inspired by her work and came back home with my mind full of ideas.
    I just love these life little surprises.
    Thank you!

    • What a great story! And that Lisa Leonard? She is one cool chick, isn’t she? I adore her! So glad you and I have bumped into each other – thanks to Lisa.

  2. OH, I have had similar things happen…that I never imagined when I started my blog….I love those God moments…where he steps in through our writing and brings such sweet sisters closer to us!!!! Thank you!

    • Maybe not yet, but soon, right? You’re doing a meetup aren’t you? That will be a blast! I can’t wait to hear how it goes, and what God’s got in store for you!

  3. This is so great. I too have found and deepened friendship through blogging. What an unexpected gift! But haven’t really met that many in person. That would be great.

    • (in)RL is for you, Jean! Have you registered for a meetup? It will be the perfect opportunity for you to meet wonderful women right there in your own community!

  4. I have not had that experience yet, but would love to! Blogging makes wonderful introductions across the world, but nothing takes the place of being face to face with a friend.

    ~Di

    • I agree. Blogging is a wonderful way to connect with people you may not have known, otherwise. And meeting face-to-face? That’s just the icing on the cake, isn’t it?

  5. What a joy! This has not happened to me, but what a moment that would be! I absolutely love the women of the blogs I read. I wish I could meet them in person. I don’t comment a lot, but every post touches my heart.

    • It’s wonderful to hear how much the posts mean to you, Brittany. Thanks. We want everyone to have the experience of connecting in real life. That’s the whole idea behind the (in)RL meetups. I do hope you’ll register for a meetup in your community. And, if there isn’t one scheduled yet in your area, you can sign up to host one!

    • Sometimes when I travel, I think I recognize people I know only in the blog world. I haven’t worked up the courage yet to walk up to them and ask them – the way Michelle asked me. She’s a brave one, that Michelle.

  6. I call these times “God Moments”. Things like finding a good bargain, good parking spot, getting good news, check in mail for exact amount you need to pay bill.

    I haven’t met anyone from a blog or e-mail in person, per say. I have connected on a higher level than just e-mails & prayers.

    Interesting incident!

  7. What a beautiful testament to the importance of sharing our stories with the world. They matter to someone and can being about changes both seen and unseen in ourselves and others.

    Thanks for sharing this encouraging story for us bloggers!

    • I do love the way these relationships have changed me. They’ve made me more willing to let down my guard. It really has been a gift. And yes…we just never know – when we write the words and then hit “publish” – who God wants to bless, do we? So keep on writing for Him. You are a blessing, and you are changing the world!

  8. The online haven I call home – Hannah’s Prayer Ministries – is much like that… the realization that you’ve actually developed real relationships in the online world that transition perfectly and beautifully into real life… it’s something you wouldn’t believe possible until it happens. It’s amazing.

    Also, I’d like to be in that photo with you two. 🙂

    • Thanks for sharing about that sweet, online community. It’s wonderful to find a place to call home, even if it’s online. And you’ve stated it perfectly: “real relationships…that transition perfectly and beautifully into real life…” That should be a tag line. 🙂

      (Yes. We NEED you to be in a photo with us.)

  9. I haven’t met anyone yet but hope to do so in the future. God will have to design the time and the place. Blessings to you and your friendships.

  10. A great story! I’d love to sit across from both of you in a coffee shop.
    I’ve not had this happen yet, either. But it would be so much fun!
    Thanks, Diedra, you make me smile!

  11. Oh sweet Deidra — this made me smile and have a little morning well-up, too! I am so grateful for that crazy, snowy coffee shop night (and hey people, don’t let her fool you — she looked awesome…even in The Big Ugly!). You are such a treasure in my life — a wonderful encourager, a caring friend, and just plain fun! Love you.

      • You two are blessed, indeed. Such a lovely story , such terrific people. And dear Michelle – did you catch the description of yourself here??? Please memorize it, print it out, paste it on your mirror and BELIEVE IT. In two weeks I will meet several of the lovely people I’ve discovered in this first year of serious blogging – and I am deeply grateful for that chance. Also, more than a little bit nervous, to tell you the truth. Feeling a lot like Deidra inside ‘the big ugly,’ I’m guessing. So, I’ll take to heart the good outcome of your experience and believe it for my own.

  12. Why do the best things always happen when we look our worst? Happens every time.

    And to think that I met you both when you were together … in Alabama.

    Michelle had told me she introduced herself in a coffee shop. Glad to know the whole “beautiful” story.

  13. I will never tire of this story.

    I haven’t had one of these chance meetings, like you had with Michelle, but I love that I’ve gotten to meet you three times, Michelle two times, Lyla Lindquist @ A Different Story many times, and others. These relationships are real, for real.

  14. What a great story! I haven’t experienced anything like this, but I can really say that being part of this on-line world and the connections that I’ve made have enriched my life so much. Such a blessing.

    • I remember when social media first started taking off. My kids were teenagers and I was all freaked out about the whole thing. Way back then, it just didn’t even cross my mind the way Jesus could show up here on the internet. I never could have imagined the richness of the friendships I’d find here. Jesus absolutely does show up and you are so right – the friendships He’s given me through blogging, and especially through (in)courage, have definitely enriched my life.

  15. I met a girl named Deidra and we sang “How Great Thou Art” under a crazy beautiful Texas sky. It’s one of my favorite stories and I’ll never forget it. 🙂

  16. One of the best friends I have ever known is a gal I met thru my own blog…and last year, she flew to Cali from Iowa to attend my church’s women’s retreat. It was our first IRL meeting and yet…we felt like we had known each other forever and I’ve missed her deeply every day since she left. Amazing what the Lord can do…and how small the world really is in His hands!!

    So happy for your meeting…I am kinda jealous. Come to Cali!! <3

    • That amazes me, too. I tend think the world is such a big place. So big, that I can talk myself out of reaching out to make a connection, like the one you made with your friend from Iowa. But moments like that one you had with your friend, and the one with Michelle in the coffee shop, remind me we are all so much closer than we realize. And we need each other. We really do.

      (Perhaps a trip to the midwest is in your future? Nebraska is right next door to Iowa!))

  17. You live two miles from Michelle?!!! That’s crazy! She went to grad school just down the road from my house and I’m sure we both were in canoes on a nearby reservoir at the same time. I’m going to meet her for reals at Relevant. Wait! I think I’m going to meet you there, too! Oh, it’s all just one big foretaste of heaven, isn’t it!

    • Yep! Michelle’s my Relevant roomie! I saw the badge on your blog, Nancy and I was so excited when I realized you and I will get to meet face-to-face! What a thrill!

  18. I love that story! I would like to blog but have not done that yet, can’t imagine saying anything for a blog not a good writer.

    • Hey Lynn! Have you thought about attending an (in)RL meetup in your community? You don’t have to be a blogger to attend. Just a girl who enjoys friendships and beach houses and chocolate and laughter and living life together.

  19. I have some real life friends that I met through blogging as well. They are all the way across the states though. But we’ve met up three times and our whole families have a great time together. We are leaving in 3 weeks for their daughter’s wedding.

    I say they are God’s gift to me. That special friendship that didn’t happen by coincidence. 🙂

  20. What a beautiful story. It always amazes me to hear the friendships God has opened up, right here online. And…He knows us so well. He knows online isn’t all there is. And it really isn’t enough. So He arranges for us to bump into each other, or reach out to each other, and we get to meet face-to-face. It’s incredible!

  21. What a precious and beautiful story! Amazing! Blogging has certainly changed me and my life, as well. God has brought so many wonderful women my way, and yes, so many new and wonderful relationships have begun right there in the comment box. I was so blessed this past July to have met one of my blogger buddies when my daughter and I made a road trip up north and met sweet Kelli from Mothers on Mission). Thanks so much for sharing your story with us! Many blessings, Debbie

  22. I love that story and can totally relate to trying to sneak out without being seen. God has an amazing way of giving us the best gifts when we think we’re not “good enough.” It just goes to show his incredible love for us! Your story put a smile on my face!

  23. YOU! i’ll never forget sitting next to you at deeper still 🙂 what a blessing it was to meet you and see other (in)courage bloggers (in)RL! 😀

  24. I used to think of things like this as coincidence, but the past few years I have realized they are really just divine appointments.

    I loved reading this, 🙂

  25. I haven’t met blogging friends just yet. But I have had the privilege of meeting 3 moms from my online Due Date Club. We started chatting at Mothering.commune as we were all due with our babies in April. I think I was just 6weeks pregnant then. These women encouraged me and loved me not knowing me. Especially when I was very sick with extreme morning sickness barely getting off the sofa and having to have fluids at hospital for dehydration. They were my friends when I couldn’t get out to see any others! They knew how I felt being in the same stage of pregnancy. We chatted like this till we one by one were in labor, anxiously awaiting all our babies arrivals! We chatted like this through their first year, then got kicked off MDC as a due date club cause of course our babies were no longer due! So we created a private FB group and this is when we finally got to use real names and see pics and know each other well. One mom was driving through to visit family so another in a nearby state met us at my home and the three of us with our families enjoyed an afternoon together. It was surreal finally meeting them! AMAZING! Another I chat on phone to and text daily, flew up with her daughter just to hang out! It was magical! These relationships ARE real, even when distance is vast! But I could never go through life without some local friends too. God makes room and need for both! What a fab story you have! She is not only a blog friend, but also local! Double SCORE!!!!

  26. And another Divine appointment (as Rachel says). I met a gal through our house church. We started chatting and I found out she lost her 25 week old baby in womb. I am full of brokenhearted love for babyloss moms. We connected deeply and found out that we both follow many of the same babyloss blogs. It has connected us even more. I love that she gets both the blog world and the IRL. That she understands how important both are to me and that while I get to know her locally, I also get to see her in blog land and see the real deep stuff that others may not, nor understand. And vice versa! It is a beautiful thing and DEFINITELY a God planned meeting!!!

  27. I met Jona four years ago. She found a link to my best friend’s (Beth) blog from Beth’s sister’s blog (Sarah). Jona and Sarah have been friends for a long time. Beth had my blog listed in my blogroll. Jona clicked on it. Turns out Jona grew up in my house! She had sinced moved to Michigan (where I grew up!). I live in a parsonage so there’s been a long line of pastors and pastor families who lived here. I am a pastor’s kid as well. Jona and I are practically the same age and have such similar childhoods. She got to meet me two years ago and tour her own childhoold home. It was a really cool experience. I hope we can meet again someday.

  28. I loved this story! As I was reading it, I was wondering if it was Michelle! She’s one of my favorite bloggers, she’s such an encourager to many (as you are!) I can see how you both became fast friends. Thanks for sharing this – made me smile!

  29. Deidra – I could say the SAME thing about you — when I saw you come in as my roomie. You are one cool chick yourself, girl! I love how I can hear your voice reading this post. It’s one of those forever sister moments where it’s more like a reunion than a first time meeting. You are just as you are online — fun, real, encouraging, and … you make me open my heart as well as laugh about everything. You’re an amazing blessing to my (in)courage beach retreat.

  30. You two live 2 miles from each other!?! How cool is that! I love how you came together like that in a coffee shop. What a beautiful story Deidra!