The Friendship Reflection

Written by Gail Rodgers

Why is it we are drawn to some people more than others? What makes us want to maintain a friendship?

Friendship is a life line. Connecting with like minded people who genuinely care about one another is a gift we take for granted all too often.

Friends are people we feel good with.
Some make us laugh, some hear us out and really listen to our hearts, others support us when the going is tough and still others just hang with us when we need down time.

A true friend holds up a mirror in which we see ourselves.

They are the ones who show us our strengths when all we see is weakness; they point out our good character traits, like courage and loyalty, when we are down on ourselves. They remind us of past accomplishments and spur us on in our future. They build into our lives and we are richer for having spent time with them. We come away with a stronger sense of “self” because we have been together.

Be mindful of the mirror you hold up for your friends. Do you reflect back to them the goodness you find in their hearts and in their character?

It’s popular today to be sarcastic and even mean in our comments with one another. It’s all said in the “I was only joking” way. Yet when we come away from times with friends and admit that their words cut and hurt we need to evaluate our friendships. A true friend can joke and laugh with you but the tone changes when they laugh at you. The reflection they hold up to you is negative and it leaves a bad taste in your mouth. You come away with a lesser sense of “self”.

People who leave you with this reflection are not true friends.

Be mindful of the reflection you hold up to those close to you. How do they feel after an interaction with you? Be intentional about reflecting back their strength of character. Be gentle when honesty requires a hard look at something in another’s life.  Be conscious of building people in a way that challenges them to continue moving forward in their lives.

Be a relationship builder.

Remember that words make up only 7% of your communication. Be aware of the tone and body language you are sharing with those you care about. It communicates loud and clear!

Be intentional about surrounding yourself with friends who are truly friends and not ones who actually tear you down all in the name of fun.

Over the course of time people will seldom remember what you said but they will always remember how you made them feel.

Evaluate your friendships. Nurture those that build into your life. Seek out ways to build into the lives of those you care about.

  • Listen well and offer advise only if asked.
  • Respect different points of view. Remember every coin has two sides just as every issue does.
  • Never betray trust. Hold confidences with care.
  • Never manipulate by being intentionally controlling, needy or weak.
  • Deal with conflict. Left to simmer it will boil over and do damage.
  • Cultivate warmth and caring.

As Christians we have the Holy Spirit to give us wisdom and understanding in our relationships. Why not invite Him to empower you in new and fresh ways as you build into the lives of those you care about?

Heavenly Father,
I ask You to show me how I can give out grace in the situations around me today. Help me to see the opportunities You provide to be generous with kindness, forgiveness, compassion, a gentle response, a listening ear or time to just be with someone. I cannot do this on my own. I ask right now that You would fill me with Your Holy Spirit. Thank You that You are my Source and will give me what I need to pass on to others. Father, help me today to see my environment as one You want to penetrate with Your grace. Help me to excel in the grace of giving today by the power of Your Spirit. . In Jesus’ name, amen.

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