(Oh my word! One more day to go! Woooo-hoooo!)
Only joining me now?
Click HERE to read each post in this series on Intentional Friendship.
Today I was rereading my journal from the beginning of the year. I had been contemplating my friendships yet again. It’s no secret I struggled when I moved to Texas 5 years ago. I had no idea then (or 5 years ago) I’d write a 31 day series on Intentional Friendship this fall. The subject of friendships feels vulnerable and unfinished and full of mistakes for me.
Maybe my un-perfect dance with friends resonates with you? Somedays my girlfriends down here seem lacking and just so whatever but then I remember I’m comparing them to what I used to have and that’s not being fair to them. I can’t make these people become those people. I wouldn’t want to be friends with someone pressuring me into being somebody that I’m not.
The truth is, the girls that I’ve gotten to know here are awesome! Yes, they’re not perfect but they are great fun to be with. Most of us have something in common being at the new mommy stage. Which I’ve discovered, children are a connecting point in friendships. It’s when I let my expectations at home, leave with a prayer over the time together and my desire to be freely me, that helps keep my insecurities and fear of not being good enough, fitting in, etc subside. I want Jesus to lead me no matter how hard that is.
See, like you, I have struggled in my friendships.
Maybe not like you, I have moved away from my homeland, 1500 miles. From having a core group to having a core question “What’s wrong with me?” was difficult as I tried to assimilate and make friends.
But, let’s be honest. Who am I kidding. When I lived back home my girlfriends and I had our fair share of issues and things we put up with. Who doesn’t, right? After I moved here, my girlfriends back home seemed next to perfect and I nearly forgot some of our ‘issues’.
There were a couple of friends I made that fell apart. Yes, I’ve made mistakes. Some friends became unfriended after unwanted drama. It hurt. Still causes me to wonder some days what was really happening in those relationships. Looking back I wasn’t at a healthy place in my life then. Those friendships died off perhaps because we were both unhealthy and that concoction of issues was destined for failure.
Here are my words from january 2014
Some friends come into our lives and last forever. Bedrock
Some friends are only for a season – just what you need.
Some friends come, seem good, reality hits and the friendship falls apart.
I’ve experienced all of these.
I think it’s good to recognize this and the be grateful for those forever gals because God know we needed them.
To acknowledge the short-term angels sprinkled in along lives rocky road. God knew just what we needed.
And to learn from the friendships that didn’t work out. To look at what you were going through and see what was going on in your own heart.
As I consider my friendships that withered away, I see how I was at an unhealthy place and the growing I needed to do. Those friendships were born with a good motive and then turned bad.
Because the truth is you can not change people. I can’t change you and matter how hard I try. Hindsight is always better than foresight and I didn’t nearly know what I was doing walking into those relationships. Something did click with each of those girls ands we had our share of great memories.
I have grown and changed a lot since then. No, I’m not perfect or arrived! But, I have learned from my experiences. I’m not saying it won’t happen again but hopefully I’ll be more discerning and rely on God’s strength in the difficult times and not my own.
The only reason I can think of that I went through those difficult relationships was for me to bury deeper in the chest of God. The ache and struggle of what I went through, God only wants to redeem and show me that real, true friendship is found solely in Him. Those seasons in my life didn’t feel good but God is good. I can trust God with my life, my dance, because He is leading me. He is holding my arms up and leading in each step of the dance floor he designed for me.
We ladies are all created with a desire to be known deeply by someone, a best friend. (Watch this video if you missed it on Monday.) Yet, with the longing, is it right to demand that God fills it for us with a friend that we want here right now? “Some God,” we think when the demand goes unanswered. “He doesn’t even care.”
That demand sounds so familiar! I’ve been there. Still go there sometimes. But what does that say about God when He doesn’t answer our prayer? What happens to our relationship with Him? Is God good like the Bible says? Like the preachers preach? Like that the veteran believers testify?
I think it’s good to be honest with God and tell him our desires but to demand He give us what we want? What if we ask for that friend but then be open to how God moves? Being open to how he answers our longing because God is good. He can’t not be good. He doesn’t think like us or we don’t think like him. If we can be open to how He moves, His ways, we might say instead,
“Some God! I never could have dreamed he would move in this way. That he would take my broken pieces and create a story out of my life. A story that is difficult and hard and yet now has a profound beauty all of its own. He is worth trusting in the most difficult, darkest seasons of life. His ways are completely different than mine but when I allow myself to move into His story for me I am invited into life. Not the life I dream of here on earth but abundant life. He is some God”
How about you? Can you see how God is moving in this season of your life or are you busy demanding God move the way you want Him to move? Are you open to God’s invitation to move into the difficult and hard places? Will you own your story and trust Him for He is good? Will you lay aside your dream for God’s dream for your life?