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F-R-I-E-N-D-S

Updated: Mar 15, 2021

Friends, how many of us have them?



No, I'm for real... how many of us have them?

A good friend is rare these days. We live in a society that conditions us to believe that based on our experiences (or the experiences of other people) that no one can be trusted. Constantly seeing tweets and posts about the men and women of this generation, these messages continue to perpetuate negative energies that we often bring into our everyday lives. We, especially a lot of the people in my generation, have been trained to march into all types of new relationships with our guards up, declaring that "anyone is capable of anything," using that as our bulletproof vest of protection.


And I guess, rightfully so.


Trust is a process, it is earned not given. Relationships take time to build. But often when creating new friendships, especially after we've recently been hurt (or hurt in the past), we protect ourselves to prevent us from being put into positions where we can be hurt again. But when you find a good friend, and I mean a good friend... I'm talking about someone who is never afraid to tell you about yourself, someone who is cheering you on in life, someone who is there for you at your highest and lowest, someone who you can really call on when you're in need, someone who prays for you, and someone who accepts you for you, these are the types of relationships that are the valuable ones – they deserve appreciation, respect, and assiduous care.


How many people in your life have been there to genuinely support you, lift you up, and wish you the best, while growing with you? How many are praying that you fall, smiling in your face while talking behind your back, secretly plotting on you, all while trying to keep you from moving forward?

I mean, just think about it. In order to help us understand the value in the relationships we have with people, we have to take a step back and honestly reflect on them. Before you keep reading, maybe take some time today and just think about those relationships that you have had and that you have now. Take some time to appreciate those valuable relationships, and reflect on the good things. And then reflect on those not so good relationships, what they have taught you, and how you have grown since then.


However, to me, there is one relationship that is more important than any other:


My relationship with God.


It's not my job to preach to you, but I know for me personally there one who is always there, even in my silent storms, is God. This past year, with school, work, and things going on in my personal life, I had an opportunity to reflect on how important relationships are with friends, loved ones, family, and more importantly God. It seemed like everything was being tested, my relationships, my drive, and even my spirituality. But I know for sure, God places people in our lives for a reason, because this journey called life is not meant to be dealt with alone. Through my relationship with Him, is where I learned about myself, friendship, and my relationships with people in my life. Here we go:


Prayer. When I'm in feeling a way, I take it to God. Like I said, this is the most important relationship for me. So I put time and energy into investing in it. Spending time with God is crucial. For me that doesn't just include prayer, meditation, listening to gospel music and reading devotionals. It's spending quality time, being still, being silent, and stepping away from everything that's going on for a split second. It's an opportunity to release, a place of peace, and a reminder that despite my situation, life isn't about control, cause I don’t have control over everything -- but God does, so I talk to Him about it. If you are, or aren't religious, find something that works for you a time for stillness, silence, and serenity.


Selflessness. All relationships require selflessness and effort. Everybody is going through life at the same time, and we're all going through different things -- whether we express things vocally or we leave them up to the imagination of others. Be a friend to those who are a friend to you. You never know what someone else is going through, check in with them. It could be a lot of things, maybe they've been dealing with their own weight, that you know nothing about. Don't be so consumed in your own mess that you forget to check in on others.


Vulnerability. Be as open as possible. Guard yourself, guard your heart, guard your emotions, do what you need to do to protect yourself but don't close yourself off completely to everyone -- especially not a genuine friend. You might not know what is going on, why you are feeling the way you are feeling, or figured out everything you need at this time. Maybe it's just a hug, a shoulder to cry on, words of affirmation from a friend, or maybe more professional help. Be vulnerable, be honest, and be able to tell people in your corner how you need them during this current season -- even if it's merely as a place of support. All situations don't call for vulnerability with others, it's up to you how much you want to disclose. But the person you owe honesty and vulnerability to the most is yourself -- take care of you, always, and sometimes you can't take care of you without a little help.


Ask. It's okay to ask for help. I had to learn this. I can be really stubborn sometimes, I want to solve my problems myself and sometimes I just don't know how to ask for help or where someone else can help in a problem that's my responsibility to deal with. I don't like dragging people into situations that I've gotten myself into -- I don't want to be a burden. "We often try to protect people from our trouble, but if someone is willing to walk through it with you, don't turn them away." So often, we forget that people are in our lives for a reason. If there is someone, someone genuine, in your life who is willing to walk through this journey with you -- no matter how crazy they get -- LET THEM! And cherish that person and your relationship.


Often times we don't appreciate the true value of a friend and what it means to have one. Sometimes it takes us reflecting on the relationships that we have, with the important people in our lives to really understand their worth. Pour into someone else today. Take some time today to check up on a friend, tell them that you love them, maybe it's giving them a hug, laughing together, reminiscing on a memory you shared together, maybe it's sending them an old picture, invite them out for some time together, depending on where they are, what they have going on, what they are doing, it might just be what you both need. Maybe even go the extra mile today: step outside of your comfort zone. Find a new friend, share a smile with someone on the street, or do something today that shares with the rest of the world that true and genuine friendship very much still exists. Contrary to popular belief, everybody ain't out to get you.


Feel free to share pictures of you and your friends in the comments, or on social media using the hashtag #friendshipaconcept, I wanna see y'all!






P.S. Please leave comments below about what you think about this post, I do this for us so the feedback is crucial for the improvement of the content that I post. Tell me what you think. Post questions, start new conversations, all that good stuff.

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