May 2, 2017

Sacrificing For Community

I recently started a 7 day devotional about surrounding yourself with godly people to build a strong community of support. Today's devotional talked about how we must make sacrifices in our own lives to prioritize the important relationships in our lives. This is something I've struggled with over the years as I went from college student to wife to wife + new mom in a very short period of time. Most of my friends weren't or still aren't in "that" stage of life yet as I was going through those big changes. Even though I had a few friends who stuck by me through all of that change, it was hard feeling like I didn't have any friends who "got it." There have been so many times where I felt like a friend wasn't checking in with me or didn't care to know what was going on in our lives unless I reached out to them first, and that really hurt.

I've finally started to find some mom friends who I really get along with. Over the last two years, I've built these friendships and I don't feel so alone. Yet I still crave to build a bigger tribe of friends who become family. Friends we can go on double dates with. Friends who we babysit swap with. Friends to have over for a barbecue and don't feel like we have to "entertain." Friends who know you inside and out.

It's so easy to get into the mindset of "well if they care about my life, they'll reach out to me first." To some extent, yes, the check-ins and invitations to hang out should go both ways. Everyone is busy with their own lives but sometimes there are things behind the scene that are more distracting to our friends than we will ever realize. We all have good intentions to stay in touch but sometimes good intentions just aren't enough. I've let numerous friendships fall to the wayside over the last two years because I was heartbroken that they didn't keep up with my life the way I felt they should. But did I speak up and let them know I was feeling hurt? Nope. I didn't, which makes me just as much of the problem as them.

So from now on, I'm going to work on pouring extra love into those relationships that I feel are lacking. Show them all the love and grace I'd want in return BUT without any expectations. For all I know, those same people might be feeling the exact same way about me! The world needs more love on a daily basis! The only way to build my friend-family is to extend God's love to everyone who is important to me. I need to work on that before I ever judge someone for being "too busy."

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