You’ve used this hashtag before, right? Remember? That super cute picture you posted of you and your girlfriends on Instagram, well, super cute of you, you didn’t even check to see how your friends looked. (Busted.)
While this does make for a great hashtag, it’s actually a very true statement. It’s not just a cute phrase that sounds good, because when we are connected into a healthy relationship with someone – life is better together.
Now, I’m no Yoda when it comes to relationships and friendships, but I’ve learned a little about the power of togetherness in my short 29 years on this earth. I do know what it feels like to be with and without healthy friendships in my life.
Since the arrival of social media, the word “friend” has gotten a facelift. And like all plastic surgery, there is a whole lot of fake going on (and possibly some ugly too).
Thanks to Facebook, we can now claim 300+ friends. Oh, and there is no longer a need to let time test friendships, all you have to do is hit a little button and “WHALA!” your a bonafide friend… to some guy who lives in a country you cannot pronounce and that doesn’t have a profile picture to actually prove that he is human or some chick who sells discounted Ray-Bans and is a motivational quote addict.
Yep, we’ve really improved on the concept of being a friend. Seriously, who doesn’t love that satisfying high that comes with approving a request for friendship. It’s like your reaffirmed that you are sought after and valued by someone out there… at least faceless foreign guy and Ray-Ban chick.
Okay, enough with the messing around. Can we get real right now? How many friends do you really have?
I’m not talking about the ones who send the obligatory “Happy Birthday” message on your wall, or the snapchat friend who keeps you up-to-date on how amazing their life is (and how sucky your life is in comparison), not the ones who you have seemingly-deep-but-yet-somehow-shallow conversations with every week. And my favorite, the ones who sign off their text messages with “Love you!” when you hardly even know them.
Can we put some restrictions on this phrase, people? Loving your mom who gave birth to you and the person you just met at Starbucks or at the last conference you attended just doesn’t seem right.
We might be agreeing and rolling our eyes right now, but let’s not forget we are probably guilty of every one of these things. These are what I like to call faux friendships. They have every appearance of the real thing but a closer look would tell you that all that glitters isn’t gold.
No, I’m talking about friends who actually don’t have to tell you “I love you” every single time they talk to you, because you already know they do. Their entire relationship with you screams “I love you”.
They are there to encourage you when you have fallen. They are there to celebrate the wins of your life, no matter how tempted they are to be jealous, and they are willing to drop everything they are doing when an emergency arrives.
One of the best marks of friendships is that they are willing to give you the hard truth when you really need it because they sincerely care about you and want to see you grow from your mistakes. They want to see you succeed in life and they will do what it takes to help you – even if it’s uncomfortable and messy.
True friendship isn’t always pretty, but it’s what we need.
So, how is your friend-life?
At this point, I think we can all agree. We want this type of friendship in our lives. We NEED this kind of friendship in our lives, but how? Some of us are still over here trying to figure out where we went wrong with faceless foreign guy and Ray-Ban chick.
The answer starts with us. (Surprise!)
Simply be. Be that kind of friend. Be present. Be sincere. Be honest. Be thoughtful. Don’t get ticked off easily. Don’t give to get. Don’t be needy. Be quick to forgive. Be quick to admit your faults. Love them with the same love that Christ loves you with. (Ephesians 5:2)
If you don’t have any real friends, start taking steps towards being a friend. Lasting friendships aren’t maintained on social media or through text messages. Call someone up or take someone out for lunch. Step out of your comfort zone and open up.
Love takes risks.
Make a commitment with someone that you will see this year through, together. Pray for each other. Hold each other accountable. Build each other up. Help each other achieve dreams and goals.
Don’t ever believe the lie that you can do this life alone. You were not created to be alone. You were not created for faux friendships. You were created to live life with others in rich, satisfying relationships.
Better things are waiting for you on the other side of together.
“Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone? A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.”
Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 NLT
About the Author:
My name is Paige and Jesus is my everything. My passion is to see women of all ages find their beauty & purpose in Him. I’m married to my best friend and a mommy to 3 little princesses… (Read more.)