Who are my friends? Have you ever asked this question before? I did during my senior year in college. It was a time when my friends and I were figuring out what we were going to do after college and where we would be located. I knew that our futures would take us on different paths, so it made me wonder who I would stay in touch with.
The Barna Group asked women to identify conditions that would create a desirable life and three-quarters of U.S. women (75%) said that having close, personal friendships was one.
This desire for close, personal friendships and what it looked like were things I began to think about in my senior year of college. While the majority of my friends left the campus and relocated, I decided to stay on my campus and make it my home until God called me elsewhere. It was during this time that I began to better understand biblical friendships.
Aside from learning that (1) before I can have Christ-centered relationships, Jesus needs to be the center of my life, (2) biblical friendships must be built on a different set of blue prints…i.e. the Bible, and (3) I have to be intentional to build up my friendships, (4) I have learned that friendships come in all shapes and sizes. It doesn’t matter if they are older, younger, passing friends or friends for a long period of time; I’m learning that each relationship God brings is His way of blessing and refining me.
The writers of the girlmatters blog are some friendships that come in all shapes and sizes. I probably would not have built a friendship with them if we didn’t serve in ministry together. I’m thankful for them and for the ways they support and encourage me to love God more. C. S. Lewis said, “Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art… It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things that give value to survival.”
As I’m getting older (turned 40 this year!), I’m realizing how valuable women friendships are, especially as we face challenges and difficulties of life. I hope you are all building Christ-centered friendships and opening your hearts to receive those friendships that come in different shapes and sizes. I’d love to hear what you have been learning about Christ-centered friendships!