I had quite a few responses on the topic of friendship. It appears to be a deep – hard topic – for all of us!
Many said that they will not just tell anyone what is going on in their lives. That they feel they need to guard their family.
This made me think…. we do have to be careful. We need to protect our families. For me, there are people who I share everything with and those that I don’t . You might be asking, “how is that real? Real with some and surface with the others?” No, I think for me, I tend to be real with everyone. But there are things that are, in my opinion, too much information to share with everyone. I think when it comes to marriage you need to have those one or two people who you share things with. It is so important to guard your marriage and show respect to one another. I know I would not want my husband telling everyone that I am a mess. I mean – I am at times… but you get the idea. I am an open book about past mistakes that I have made in my marriage. Things that I need to work on. How I can be a better wife. But the rest I leave between me and my husband. If I need to talk about stuff or have accountability, I have those select few…
So to sum that up… I would say that I am real when it comes to things about me. Respectful when it comes to other people.
Some said they need to guard their heart.
Yah! Unfortunately, there are many times when people can take what you tell them and pass it along as if it is their story to tell. I am sure most of us have been hurt by another women at least once. Why is it that we as women feel like we have the right to tell the world each others stories? For one, I think that we have so many insecurities. And for some, talking about other people’s downfalls, make them feel better. I have been guilty of it for sure. So maybe part of being real starts with us facing our own insecurities and asking God to heal some of those wounds. To fully know who we are in Christ. To seek His approval and no one else. To rely on Him to meet those deepest needs. So what do we do in the meantime? How do we guard our hearts without living a life at surface level? Shoot – I don’t know. I think for me, I’m just me. Do I care what others think about me? Yes. To a degree. But I care more about how my life – the truth of my life, can point to Christ. I think that the reason I have so many people in my life that are real with me is because I am willing to put it all out there… within reason of course. And yes, I have been hurt. And yes, I will be hurt more. So, I pray that God will show me the people who He wants me to share my life with and what He wants me to share. I ask Him to guard my heart. Because if I guarded it – well no one would see it!
I have come to a place where I know that everyone has stuff. Hard stuff. Because life is hard. Some choose not to share for – well many reasons. I choose to share because I think that maybe by showing my shortfalls, my inadequacies and my weaknesses, it will give others the strength to go to God about theirs. I have fallen flat on my face several times in life but God has always been there to pick me back up. By others seeing my life – the real me – they know they are not the only one struggling. And I don’t know about you, but when I am struggling, sometimes it feels like I am the only one… because no one talks about it…
Some don’t share because they feel different. And they are afraid that no one will get them. No one will care. Yes, I think that God places different people in our lives for different purposes. Different people will get us on different levels. And that is okay. When it comes to sharing those deep, personal things, we do have different friendships for those things. I think probably to a degree, everyone has a part of them that is afraid of rejection. Afraid that people won’t get them. I know there is a part of me that has those fears. I think for me, I overcome those things by telling myself everyone has that stuff. Everyone, at times, feels different. I just ask God how He wants to use my life and I ask Him to help me be more transparent.
We can not control how others respond or treat us. But we can control what type of trustworthy friend we are. Maybe trust starts with ourselves. Maybe it starts with God being all we need. I don’t know – sounds easier than it is. So, I guess the journey continues as we seek God to know what it looks like to be real….
Proverbs has some great verses on friendship….
Walk with the wise and become wise; associate with fools and get in trouble.
A friend is always loyal, and a brother is born to help in time of need.
There are “friends” that destroy each other, but real friends stick closer than a brother.
I want to strive to be a better friend. It is something that I will always work on. That I will always seek God about. When reading Proverbs 13:20 I feel it is very important to be careful who you take advice from. Who you walk hand in hand with. But, having said that, I still want to be real with everyone. Of course, there are different kinds of friendship and some in which we share everything. I don’t think everything it meant for everyone though. Just like my examples above on guarding our family. There is a big difference between being real and having a deep friendship. I feel like I have a lot of people I would call a friend. But only a select few that I would say are close friends that I share it all with – weather they want to hear it or not : ) So I guess in the instance of earning trust…. Yah – the people who I share it all with are friends that I not only trust with my heart, but also welcome their advice and opinion concerning my life.
Wow! This is such a big topic. One that I am sure I will revisit. Thank you all so much for your input and feedback. It has helped me grow. I would love to hear from you regarding this… Thanks!!! XO