How to Find the Right Friends
Friends are important.
I think we can all agree on that. Godly community is what you can lean into when life gets rough. It's the friends you want to celebrate with when all the good things happen. But friendship can also be hard. I've heard so many girls say, "I prefer to be friends with guys because they don't cause drama and don't stab you in the back." It breaks my heart to hear that. I promise, when you find the right friends who celebrate you in the good and lift your arms when you're weak, you'll never go back. Girls, invest in friendships because they are so incredibly needed.
Here are a few ways that can help you find the right friends. The ones you will want in your corner through everything:
1. Think about how she talks about others.
This one is a biggy. You want a friend who is willing to speak life in all situations. You want one that you know will have your back through everything and not betray your trust. If she gossips and drags other people through the mud behind their backs, chances are she will do the same to you. Instead, find someone who is able to find joy in all situations. One that speaks about all of the good things about people instead of all the negatives. You want a person on your side who you can trust no matter what. These are the people that you want in your corner.
2. Make the first step.
Have you ever sat at home watching Netflix on a Friday night really wanting to hang out with someone but not wanting to seem overbearing and annoying? I can hear the excuses in my head right now. She wouldn't want to hang out with me. She's probably busy. She's probably hanging out with other people and I'd be encroaching on their time. I get it. It can be scary to make new friends. You fear rejection. You fear the idea of being the outsider. But truthfully, if you don't ask, it will never happen. You will waste your life away sitting on the couch waiting for an invitation. You will sit at home with hurt feelings when you look on Instagram and see everyone hanging out without you. So, make the first step. Ask that person to hang out. Ask someone new to go get coffee. Invite someone over to your house. I promise it will be so worth it in the long run.
3. Be willing to close the door.
Not all friends are good for you. In these past few years, I've had to be okay with shutting the door on toxic friendships. Some sure signs of toxicity can include: continual lying, one sided effort and feeling emotionally drained. These friendships can be hard to be a part of, but can be even harder to cut ties from - especially when your friendship has a long history. But, let me give you permission to still be friends with that person without living life with them. Wait what?
God calls us to love our neighbors and I don't think He would want you to ignore that person and ghost them forever. Instead, don't let them in emotionally. You can love a person without telling them every secret you have. You don't have to let them have full access to your relationship with your boyfriend or husband. You don't have to share all your vulnerabilities with them. But you do have to love them.
Set healthy boundaries for yourself. Be willing to close the door to the raw parts of your heart, but allow yourself the freedom to love them well. What does this look like, you might ask? It looks like what it would look like when you first meet someone. You wouldn't bear your soul to someone you just met, because you haven't built that trust yet. It's the same thing. Find surface level things to talk about. Help them through their issues. But close the door when it comes to the deepest parts of your heart. When you refuse to let them have access to that, the chains break and you are free to love them without living life with them.
I promise you, besides a steady relationship with God, investing in friendships is the best thing you could ever do on this earth. We were never meant to live life alone and I believe in the deepest parts of me that God created community for a reason. He wants us to rejoice with each other, but to also pick each other off the ground when things get hard. Friendships are hard. They're like any other relationship you have with another sinner. You mess up. You sin. And it's freaking difficult. But boy, is it worth it.
About the Author
Hey hey friends! My name is Nina and I'm from Nashville, TN. Words are my jam & I love to share the love of Christ through the typing of my fingers! My favorite things in the whole wide world are: Jesus, my husband, my puppy, and homemade guac. In that order. On any given day, you can find me belly laughing at a dumb joke I found on Facebook, ugly crying over fictional characters in a RomCom, or online shopping while my hubs is asleep next to me. Feel free to come hang out with me over at ninafowler.org where I share all the words that are swirling through my head at any given time