Friday, November 15, 2013

The Risk of Friendship

I won't comment on how long I've been gone.

I won't promise to be here regularly.

I won't be finishing the book study...too restricting and discouraging when I get behind.

I write because I love to write when I have the time.  When I have a deadline or a self-inflicted requirement, it is no longer enjoyable.

I also write when there is something on my heart...whether funny, nostalgic, contemplative, or sad.
Such as today.

I have recently been contemplating friendship.  Throughout my forty years, I have been incredibly blessed by many friendships.  I have been helped.  I have been made better.  I have experienced incredible joys and happiness.  I have laughed.

I have also experienced incredible heartache.  I have shed tears.  My heart has been broken.  I have helped when I was needed, then walked away from when I was no longer considered useful.

I have become fearful of getting close to friends.  While my joys far outweigh the hurts, the hurts have left scars.  Scars that I am afraid will be reopened and never again heal.

Throughout my life and the loss of friends, I have remembered that there is a Friend who will never leave me nor will He forsake me.  He never disappoints me.  He never hurts me.  However, I realized this week that I have often forsaken Him.  I have disappointed Him more times than I can count.  I have undoubtedly hurt Him deeper than any friend has ever hurt me.

When we offer someone our friendship, we offer a part of our hearts and a part of our lives.  Christ laid down His entire life for me.  When someone walks away with that piece of my heart that I gave to them, it is painful.  How much more when I walk away from the One Who hung on a cross and gave His holy life for me...an unworthy sinner...an unworthy child...an unworthy friend?

I ask myself if it is worth offering my heart in friendship when I know the risk of being hurt is very real.  When I think of what Christ gave and how His selfless love changed my life, I have to think that that is what He would have me do.

Love selflessly.

Love even while knowing it will bring pain.

Love.  It will change someone's life; even if they walk away.

When they do, I will run to my very best Friend Who loves me endlessly.  I will ask Him to comfort me and to keep me from being bitter.  I will ask Him for the grace and strength to love & give my heart yet again.  I will ask Him to forgive me for hurting Him deeper and more often.  I will thank Him, yet again, for His unconditional love.  And I will try to learn and practice that love throughout my life.