Today was supposed to start our blog challenge "Inspire Us Tuesdays," but Kelly's Korner is doing a series entitled "Build Em' Up" and I thought today's topic on her blog was a good segway to our series, so we will postpone our Inspire Us series till tomorrow.
Kelly's Korner asked us to talk about "Friendships: Making them and Keeping Them." I thought this was such a great topic and I have alot to say about it!
Making New Friends
Even for the most extroverted people, making friends is often difficult, especially as adults. I am an incredibly outgoing person and I have no problem speaking with new people, but speaking with new people and making new friends are two entirely different things. Not only is it difficult to find friends as an adult because we don't always put ourselves in positions to meet new people, but I would say making friends in a church environment can be equally as difficult.
You all know I am an incredibly transparent person on here and I speak honesty on my blog. I also know there are many church members who read my blog, so I hope what I am about to say comes across in the right way. I would call myself very non-conservative Christian. I believe in the truth of Jesus Christ, I believe the Bible. But there are many areas of the Bible where God allows for some gray. For example, does God ever say, "You are not allowed to watch rated R movies?" No. THAT type of gray. So, it's hard in a church because there are some very conserative Christians that would never watch a rated R movie. I try not to offend others and I try to refrain from saying things that some might disagree with or find controversial within those gray areas.
When you are meeting new people in the church, you just never know how open and honest you can be, not only about your own beliefs on things, but also about your past. And it's not that anyone has imposed that thinking on me, but you just never know when you might come across that person who thinks something that you do or have done is inappropriate. And it's difficult because I want to be myself and I want to be open about my life, but when you are new in a church home, just how open you can be without alienating people is always a concern. Or, at least, it was for me.
It's taken us a good year and a half to really gain some good friendships within our church. I am so glad we've been able to find people who accept us for who we are and who love us and our kids. It's a real blessing as a parent to have people whom you can raise your kids with, whom you can talk to about the trials of life, and whom you can depend on for help.
Keeping The Friends You Have
I have always believed that keeping friendships for a lifetime can be so wonderful but can also be very hard at times. During your 20's and 30's, when families are created and forming, it can be incredibly difficult to continue friendships, especially when everyone is in a different season of life. Some people are married, some are single, some people have kids, some don't, some have older kids, some have babies. Then, if you all have babies, it's hard to get out of the house because they are so dependent on you and find time to spend doing anything other than taking care of them. And even if you all take babies with you places, you really don't get a chance to visit because you are feeding, or burping, or changing diapers, or rocking, or soothing. So, I spent a good year being halfway there, mentally, with my friendships because it was hard to focus on anything else.
Once Avery got old enough to be mobile and a bit more independent, I really made sure to spend more time with friends. I have always loved having people over but I at least try and get out with friends, once in a while. We starting doing monthly all-adult, all-women slumber parties and someone different hosts them every month. What a blessing that's been!
What are your experiences with friendships?