About a year ago I wrote, “When a Friend becomes a “Friend”. I was frustrated that I was going through my health conditions without much encouragement from those around me. I felt alone.
A year has passed, and with it some friendships have gone too. Many things haven’t changed but what has dramatically changed is my perspective. I’m thankful for God’s answers concerning this area in my life. I want to share some of the things I have learned about friendships so far. If you feel alone, I encourage you to reflect on this post.
1) Examine your thoughts and feelings.
As a Christian, feeling alone is a red flag. I know that I am never alone. God is with me and He loves me. So many times, I have asked God for a friend without recognizing that he has been the ultimate friend. There is nothing I can say to him that he doesn’t already know.
Feeling alone is a lie the enemy wants you to believe. It is a thought that becomes the root to many deadly things. Like weeds that destroy a garden, your destructive thoughts demolish who God created you to be. Insecurity, loneliness and depression are the products of evil thoughts. You cannot ultimately be who God wants you to be if you are suppressed by your thoughts and feelings.
2) Is God your ultimate portion?
When you are in constant communication with God, you are content because he is your portion. You feel satisfied. He is your ultimate counselor and comforter in any situation.
Depending on God first allows you to be a better friend to someone. Depending on people first causes you to rely on someone for all your needs. That is too much of a burden for anyone to bear.
I have put unreasonable expectations on people to be everything I needed at the exact time I needed it. I didn’t understand that humans are not perfect and fail. I have also experienced people who put unfair expectations on me. It’s exhausting to please a needy person. In the end, you want to avoid them.
If you find yourself in despair about your lack of friendships, ask yourself: Is God my ultimate portion? I believe it’s a question that sheds light on a lack of friendships.
3) Evaluate your relationships.
In Steven Furtick’s book “Greater”, he talks about identifying the people you need to possibly put out of your life. The relationships around you can either impact your life for better or worse. You must be intentional in who you allow into your life.
Who in my life leads me to attitudes or actions outside of what God prescribes for me in his word?
Who leaves me drained rather than empowered after a typical conversation?
Who keeps me thinking smaller rather than helping me dream bigger?
These are questions everyone should ask himself or herself. If someone comes to mind, guard your heart concerning this relationship. It may be useful to limit your contact with them.
4) To have a friend you must be a friend.
Nowadays, when the feeling of loneliness comes to the surface, I become proactive. I have a small group of people who I’m blessed to have in my life. This year, I am vowing to show them that I care. I am being intentional in blessing them with no strings attached. I am setting apart time for my loved ones. Friendships are not meant to just be served, but to be a blessing to others. In that action of service, you are blessed as well.
Maybe someone that isn’t necessarily my friend is going through a difficult time. I keep them in my prayers and reach out to them. When you start to focus on being a better servant to others, it changes your perspective on friendship. I’m thinking less selfishly and more godly. When you are fully invested in relationships that matter, you find that there isn’t enough time to spend with that person.
Also, be intentional about joining a healthy church. Commit to volunteering in a ministry you’re passionate about. You will get to know people that are like-minded.
Hope this encouraged someone.
Love you all!