No one ever thought it would happen.
Least of all her.
She was a pastor’s wife and a homeschooling mom. A lovely lady with four beautiful children.
And now it’s completely fallen apart.
Heartbreak, divorce, and she’s left them all.
Not that everything was perfect because it wasn’t.
But what actually happened? Something went wrong somewhere.
Left her family behind – bewildered and searching for answers.
What would have made a difference? And what would have helped? These are the some of the questions we’ve all agonized over.
The answer isn’t simple and I don’t pretend it to be. But there is one thing that I’m certain would have helped. Might have even changed the course of this family’s history.
And that one thing is pressed upon my heart today.
A close friend.
I believe a good friend could have helped tremendously in that situation. Possibly turned it around.
Because when you’re left alone with your own thoughts and your own struggles? Your own pain and your own sin and weakness? As well as the the pain and sin of those around you?
It’s easy to get confused and off-track. To spiral downward. To listen to those negative, destructive voices.
And this is right where the Enemy wants you to be.
Which is why Christ urges us – commands us, really – that we are to love one another. Deeply. Fervently.
This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. ~ John 15:12-13
We are made to walk closely with one another.
Yet so many of you have written me telling me how lonely you are and how your heart aches for someone to understand and care about you.
And I get it. I really do.
It is increasingly difficult to find friends in this busy, fragmented world we live in. Friendship is risky and it’s rare. And yet I believe it’s essential for us as believers to be walking closely with others.
We need each other, sisters.
How Do You Closely Connect with True Friends?
Pray for friends. I’ve found over the years that I’ve had to pray for friends. Ask God to bring women in your life who will love you. Support and challenge you. As iron sharpens iron (Prov. 27:17).
Reach out. Don’t wait for someone else to make the first move. Swallow your fears and your insecurities and take a chance. Some of my closest friendships came out of my shy and hesitant, “Hi, I’m Lisa and I was wondering…..?”
Get creative. Don’t limit yourself to your small circles, but be willing to seek out friends from various places and stages in life. Some of my friends are local and some live all over the world. Some are older and others are younger than me. Each has something unique to offer in friendship.
Share openly. Be real with a few trusted friends – using discretion – and be willing to be honest and vulnerable. Feels risky, I know, but it’s a risk worth taking. God doesn’t want us to live in the shadows, but to walk out into the light.
Speak truth. I am grateful for friends who are willing to speak truth into my life. Sometimes we can be so hesitant about “hurting” a friend – that we hurt them worse by not being willing to be honest with them. So let’s lovingly, graciously, speak truth to each other too.
Communicate love. True friendship takes both time and effort. Show your friends by your words and by your actions that you love and care for them. Yes, pour into your family, but invest in good friendships too—friendships that will encourage you in your spiritual walk and ministry.
Friends, we were never meant to walk alone. And it’s not enough to give a quick hug between church services, or wave to one another from across the parking lot. We were meant for so much more.
God intended for us to be closely connected.
Love you, Sisters!
*What do you think is essential for deep friendships? How have you been able to find friends in this swirling world we live in?