After spending years allowing God to decide who I have intentional friendship with, I have discovered the true importance of who I spend my time with. We all tend to meld toward those who are in our daily circle. Our friends influence us and we influence them…so it’s important to be really careful.
There have been many times that I have desired a meaningful friendship with a person, but they didn’t seem to desire to know me. Over time, I realized that each of those unrequited friendships ended up being with a person who turned out to not be good for me. God was protecting me by keeping them distant. What felt like rejection, was actually the shadow of His wings keeping me safe. Other times there have been people that I didn’t really notice much at first but end up being fantastic friends.
These are just a couple of examples about the importance of allowing God to link together all the relationships in your life…not just your spouse. It is always baffling to me how everyone wants God to lead them to the right spouse, but they never even consider needing to be a diligent with friendship.
All of this leads me to this verse…
A bowl of vegetables with someone you love is better than steak with someone you hate. Proverbs 15:17
I would definitely enjoy any meal with someone I love over a steak with any of my enemies.
Did I say enemies? I can just hear you gasping…well, there are some people who really don’t like me. Am I to call them friends, or can I just be honest that they hate me, therefore they see me as their enemy. I don’t seek to consider anyone my enemy…but when a person in your life treats you with hostility and back biting and slander…what are they? They are an enemy.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Psalm 23:5
What a comforting thought.
Even when a person undervalues you or treats you with contempt, you can trust that God will prepare a table for you. You will never be excluded by Him. He keeps a place for you at all times.
It’s really good to start looking at your circle of relationships and evaluate how many people you engage with regularly that you can tell dislike you. Then ask God if there are any people that you are free to walk away from. Also, ask Him if there are good friends in your midst that you have not yet noticed? Allow Him to guide and direct your eyes to notice those who are meant to be part of your squad.
This is a season of deliberate relationship. Begin with family, then look out at your nearest friendships. It’ll be so worth it. I promise.
A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity. Proverbs 17:17