I have some amazing friends. Some of these friends, I’ve had for a long time. I just had a jaded perspective and poor way of investing in these friendships.
I didn’t know any better.
A lot of the time I would complain about the friends I had. I would complain about things that I really didn’t need to complain about, and sometimes I still do. I would get offended by things I didn’t necessarily need to get offended by. And this still creeps in from time to time. After getting offended I would often settle in this funky attitude fostered by self-pity, assuming they didn’t feel the way I felt about the friendship, that they didn’t value or weren’t willing to sacrifice or weren’t down to roll like I was.
I’ve put wedges in my own friendships, deflected the blame on my friends, and then downplayed the need for them in my life.
The truth is we need friends. I noticed this same demeanor and attitude that I heavily justified, in so many of us. We get hurt or offended by something our friends say or do, and we clam up and shut down, determined to keep trucking through life, just maybe without them.
Not only do we need friends but we need the right friends-I need the right friends. I need the right people to come around me when I am low and speak positive words over me and my situation and pick me up when I am vulnerable and having those reflective moments of self-doubt.
In the same sense I need those same friends to call me out on my insanity and stupidity, and let me know hey I don’t like what you’re doing, but I got your back. I need that, we need that. We need friends that hold us accountable and question our motives, our directives in life, and our ideas. We also need friends who uphold our dreams with us, talk them up, support us in acting them out, and help us move on from our failures. We need friends to remind us of the greatness we sometimes lose sight of in ourselves, but help us check and balance our reality.
If you are like me, you know the friends you have this in- I have some awesome women in my life-beautiful, wise, wonderfully made women, and you probably do too. It is the investment part and perspective that I’m missing. True friendships are sacrificial, comprise of selfless love, and honesty. Seeing that person through, whether they are peaking or wandering in the valley. It is not getting offending, but seeking to understand them. It is loving them not just when it’s easy, but through the act of commitment.
In 2018, I encourage us all to get around these people, embrace these people, and if you don’t have these kind of people in your life, pray for them and be open to receive them. Be what you want to see in a friend and be intentional about making those friendships thrive and grow. Nourish them. Create a sisterhood or a brotherhood in those friendships, instilling that familial love that holds resiliency through life’s trip ups and set backs.
We were made to live in community, to give and take, to use each other, but not abuse each other. To love one another. To learn and lean on each other. Let this be the year we redefine our perspectives and investments in our friendships.
“Show me your friends, and I’ll show you your future.” -Todd Mullins