Monday, September 14, 2009

Make a Choice Monday

Good Monday morning! I figure I can still say that because as I type this there is still 5 minutes left to the morning:) Where does the time go???? I am a bit embarrassed to admit that I took a break from school to watch 15 minutes of The View just to see Kate Gosselin as a guest co-host. Now that I feel I have cleared my conscience let's get onto better things because I do still need to finish some school, make applesauce, and do our Monday cleaning.....

Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up! Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken. ~Ecclesiastes 4:9-12

As you know I spoke on friendship on Friday. Today we are going to choose to be a good friend and I am going to share with you some of things I shared on Friday. I used an acrostic(imagine that!)

F - Forgets Wrongs
R - Real and Transparent
I – Initiates Contact
E – Encourages…….Never Envies
N – Never replaces God or Family
D – Devoted

F – Forgets wrongs. They don’t hold grudges and they learn to agree to disagree - always seeking unity. They don’t always need to be right and they can be truthful but not judgmental.

R – Real and transparent. In a true friendship you don’t need to fear being transparent and you don’t need to fear being on the receiving end of that transparency. The relationship is never one sided with one party doing all the sharing and being honest and the other party not. They will laugh with you and cry with you and never feel odd doing so.

I – Initiates contact. They are intentional about the friendship because they know the importance of it and are willing to take time to invest in your life because friendship is a time investment with great returns. Many women I spoke to looked at having to initiate contact as a negative thing. Someone took the time to intiate contact with me one time and now she is my best friend. You never know what someone is going through and why they are not the one contacting you. Instead of pouting - pick up the phone!

E – Encourages you…Never envious. William Barclay once said, “One of the highest of human duties is the duty of encouragement. It is easy to laugh at men’s ideals; it is easy to pour cold water on their enthusiasm; it is easy to discourage others. The world is full of discouragers. We have a Christian duty to encourage one another. Many a time a word of praise, of thanks, of appreciation or cheer has kept a man on his feet. Blessed is the man or woman who speaks such a word". The word encouragement means to give courage to. How often are we afraid of the next steps we need to take and we need a friend to come along and give us courage? I know in all of the crisis I have been through lately I would not have survived if it were not for girlfriends giving me courage. Friends should always be trying to understand and allowing each other to speak our fears even when we can’t fully understand or relate. Knowing that life turns on a dime and it could be us in the blink of an eye. A true friend can often understand the feelings and emotions that come with some situations even if we ourselves have never experienced them this is a gift given to women and many men cannot understand it.

N - This is a very important one. NEVER replaces God or family relationships. A true friend understands that there are healthy boundaries. And this is where it gets a little sticky but you’re closes friends should share you’re belief in Jesus Christ because when you are struggling you need someone to point you straight to the Savior and to truth not someone who will fill your mind with the lies the world wants to feed you. Please don’t misunderstand me and write me a letter telling me how wrong I was when I said we should never be friends with unbelievers. That is not what I am saying. I will tell you when you and your friend’s relationship is right with God it is much easier to maintain those boundaries. I read somewhere a very important statement: Our greatest friends were never meant to replace our greatest need to be in relationship. That is an empty place that only Jesus can fill. When I go God first go from being a taker to being a giver. Awesome advice!

D – Devoted. Friends are devoted. They don’t bail as soon as the going gets tough. They don’t give up on you when you’re having a bad day. They know you and know all about you’re junk and love you anyway.

Hope this gives you something to think about today when it comes to your friendships. If you want to read some awesome stories on the does and don'ts of friendship read about Job and his friends. If you want a story about loyalty beyond our imagination read about David and Jonathan. Read about Mary and Elizabeth to see a true story of encouragement and read about Ruth and Naomi to see an unselfish devotion.

Have a blessed day!

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