Just look at their faces.
See those two women standing with me and Dr. C?
Beautiful, aren’t they?
Amy is a podcaster, an author, and speaks to women across the nation. Lynn is a bestselling author, and speaker.
If I listed their credentials only, it might cause some of you to shy away. . . because we do that. We look at each other and we think she’s so gifted, or smart, or beautiful. Or that person is such a world changer, they couldn’t possibly be my friend. Maybe you never do that, but there was a time I absolutely did and it paralyzed me when it came to making friends.
Which is exactly what the enemy wants.
He longs to isolate us. To keep each other at arms’s length. To keep us friendless, because it feels safer somehow.
There are a lot of reasons we struggle to maintain close friendships.
The fact that we live in a culture that prizes independence over connection might be one of them.
Being busy is another.
Being hurt by a friend might make us decide to be our own best friend.
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Comparison can also be a kicker.
Yet if we keep potential friends at a distance, what are we missing?
Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. Ecclesiastes 4:9-10
Four years ago, I was burned to a crisp in ministry. It wasn’t God’s fault. I was too stubborn to ask for help. I was too hyper focused to slow down — until one day I melted.
Lynn (pictured on the far right) and I were at the same event. She came to my room, and when she saw me in the bed, curled up in a ball, she somehow knew that I was carrying a 1000-lb. weight on my soul. She prayed with me. When I say “prayed,” I mean she called heaven down.
Two people were better than one that night. Amy, Lynn, and I have all stepped into that role at times. We’ve talked through difficult things. We’ve encouraged each other. We’ve been gut-honest. We’ve prayed, and we’ve laughed until we cried.
Should we care about friendship?
A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken. Ecclesiastes 4:12
Friendship with other women makes us stronger. That’s why this girl who used to be really bad at friendship is calling women all over the world to stand shoulder to shoulder. We need each other. Now more than ever.
There was a time I wouldn’t have had the great friendships I do today. I would have gone the other way, not even giving those relationships a chance.
The enemy wants to keep us friendless, because it leaves us vulnerable.
So, let’s do the exact opposite. If you struggle with close friendships, ask God to help you break that wall down. In fact, let’s pray together right now.
Lord, the enemy desires to isolate us. To keep us at arm’s length. To imprison women behind perfect walls. We open our hearts to the possibility that together we are stronger, especially when you are at the center of the friendship. We won’t put impossible standards on those relationships, because only you fill the gaps in our heart. Give us the courage to say hello. To step out of our comfort zones. To link arms, and live our faith stronger with others. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Here’s a few things that helped me as I opened the door to strong friendships:
- Be yourself (if someone doesn’t care for you, someone else around the corner will)
- Get to know people before you shut them down (comparison kills; just don’t do it)
- Leave lots of room for grace (there are no perfect people, including you or me)
- Be intentional (Say hello. Reach out. Step outside your comfort zone)
Listen — just for you!
Do you feel comfortable carrying around old habits, or old behaviors? Maybe it’s like carrying around an old bucket of rusty tools. Listen to this encouragement from Suzie.
I’m so excited to share that we are going to do a 21 Invitations as We Walk With Jesus study in mid-October. Stay tuned!
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