I recently had an almost 3-hour lunch with a friend. We both couldn’t believe how quickly the time had flew by while we were catching up. As we were walking out to our cars, still laughing and talking, my friend started to say “we have just wasted 3 hours of our…” she caught herself mid-sentence. Before I could say anything, she quickly changed that thought to indicate how much she had valued our time together, which I chimed in and whole heartily agreed with her.
This month I have been talking about energy, positive and negative! Spending time with a good friend, a spouse, your kids or anyone you have a good relationship with, can cause your body to release a chemical called endorphins. I have had at times, a fairly bad headache and then went to church or had lunch/coffee with a close friend and the headache has totally gone away. Endorphins can trigger a positive feeling in the body, similar to morphine! Releasing feel-good brain chemicals that can also ease depression. (better than drugs!)
I have a fun little book called The Official Friends Book, by Martha Bolton. I will share a few random quotes from it, throughout this post “Close friends call each other any time of the day or night”. “Without friends to share new adventures, we become boring.”
A couple years ago a good friend of mind unfortunately heard some casual friends of ours, talking about me and the conversation turned catty, ok, really just unkind. She couldn’t believe what they were saying was true, so she jumped in to defend me. She came to me later so upset by it. “Friends hurt when friends hurt.” I was able to confirm that this group of ladies were speculating about something with no real knowledge. I told her what had really happened and a little history behind it. She wanted me to go back and straighten out all those ladies or at least let her straighten them out! I just smiled and encouraged her that I was truly not upset with these ladies and did not want either of us giving it anymore energy.
It’s taken me many years to get to this point. In my 20’s and 30’s I would have lost sleep over that and spent days writing a letter to defend myself. What I have found to still be so HARD, is when the person that hurts you or speaks poorly of you is that close friend or family member… OUCH! These are those people you have open your heart up to at a deeper level, they KNOW you and you KNOW them… or at least you thought you did.
“A friend is someone with whom you dare to be yourself.”
On a personality test I took a few years ago, I came in between an Otter and a Golden Retriever. With my Otter side, very social, can be outgoing, I can have small talk or even go a little deeper with most personalities, I enjoy casual friendships and do ok with those coming and going. With my Golden Retriever side, extremely loyal, wanting to please, once I feel extremely comfortable, really connected with a friend… they quickly become like family to me.
“Friendship doubles our joy and divides our grief.” A friend loves at all times. Proverbs 17:17
I was recently talking with a friend in her 50’s. She was fighting back tears while stating, “didn’t you think by the time we were this age we wouldn’t still be getting hurt so deeply by someone that was once such a good friend?”
You would hope at some age we would all know the VALUE of a close friendship, that friendship would be worth fighting for and working at, instead of tossing them out like an old newspaper. Unfortunately, we live in a broken world and sometimes a friendship was truly only meant for a season.
“Without friends to listen to, we become self-absorbed.” “Without friends to hold us accountable, we become too self-reliant… and we fail.” Ecclesiastes 4:10 If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up.
I want a friend who is going to love me, but also hold me accountable! I have been so blessed by some wonderful friendships and continue to be, but I’ve also, like so many of you, have been deeply hurt by some. It can certainly make us gun-shy of wanting to open ourselves up to new friendships… If you have been hurt, pray for God’s healing touch, to make your heart whole again!
1 Corinthians 13:4-8a Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8 Love never fails!
Close friendships are so worth the time, effort and ENERGY!
One of the many things I love about a close friendship… “Friends help us become a better us!”
“My friends are a precious asset.”