Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Friends for Life and Different Seasons

The topic of friendships has been on my mind for a while so in the spirit of that....here's the first blog of the year!!

Every now and then I look at the friends that I hang out with more often and the ones that I do not. While I still have great love and admiration for long time friends and remember a lot of the fun and serious times I've had with them, it is in no way diminished by my lack of attention now. So many times we have a tendency to think of same gender friends, but no this covers the gender gap.  I can think of guys that I've known for a long time (or a short time) and they have brought enrichment to me with their openness and honesty to me through our friendships the same way my female friends have.

Sometimes God gives you friends that you will experience certain things with, it does not make them more or less important then people you don't see anymore. When you are in an academic setting, God may give you people around you that know how to help keep you focused on school. People that will pull late nighters with you, go check out the new professors with you, help give you the moral support you need to get your degree. In a relationship setting, God may give you friends who have been through what you may experience in your own relationship with your significant other. In a religious setting, God will give you the friends that will help encourage you to recognize what your gifts are and to help you find a way to use them.  

So many times, people do what I did...they move out of the area and make new friends. When you move back though, you may not hang out with the same people you hung out with before. It's nice to know that even though you may not hang out with them as much as you used to that there is no love lost. So many times people assume that just because they don't see you anymore or that you don't spend time with them anymore that you feel that you have become better than them. That is not always the case. More times than not, we find ourselves wishing that we could spend more time with people we used to but because of whatever we have going on presently in our lives, we don't. It's not a matter of like and dislike it's a matter of priority and what we need to take care of to do things for ourselves. I know I have groups of girls who are wonderful, some I met as a young girl overseas and today I'm still close with them even though we don't talk everyday. There's another group of girls that I went to high school with and they're always on my mind even if we're not planning a last minute get together, but in all the celebrations and heartaches they go through I go through them as well. I remember going off to college in a town that I did not live in, not knowing a single person at the school and I made a group of friends there that I will never forget. Looking at where I am now I have a few girls that I hang out with and bounce ideas off of and make memories with but it does not discredit anything that my previous friends have poured into my life.

I can't speak on the specifics about the friends that God has given you, but I can encourage you to do this: don't let those who you don't see or talk to on a regular basis lose hope that you still hold them important. Everyone wants to know that they mean something to someone else and that they will not be forgotten. It may be a text message, a phone call, tweet, Facebook message or card. Everybody has their faults and I know mine is sometimes keeping in touch with people on a regular basis. I keep the phone numbers and emails and get so busy doing other things and I don't stop and take those few minutes to just send a hello. Most times when I do get back around talking to some of my friends, so much has happened since the previous time that we have to play catch up. But the joy of having real friends is that they don't ride you that they haven't seen you or heard from you in a very long time they just say , "hey girl I haven't seen (or talked to) you in forever..."  and then the next few minutes are spent on talking about what is going on in our lives.

If you find yourself thinking about why you haven't heard or seen some of your friends don't get upset with them.  If you have had no arguments, no disrespect, no unloving or inconsiderate moments, don't jump to conclusions. They may be going through something and they may be getting whatever support they need for that through someone else. Be happy for what you brought to their life, I'm sure they're happy for it. Just make a commitment to stay in communication with people more often that's all you can do... When someone crosses your mind, send a text, call them if you can...you'll both benefit from it. Friends are for life and for different seasons.