- Dr. Ed Stetzer
- The Joy of the Gospel, Together
- Knowing Jesus: Five Practices Of A Disciple
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Maintain Key Friendships - Blog
10 Habits of Happy Mothers
This week in Mom2Mom we discussed Meg Meekers ideas for Maintaining Key Friendships. Mothers will have to admit, friends are the first to go when we are crunched for time. Women were created to be relational, it’s just who we are. We desire to love and be loved, listen and to be heard and see and be seen. Family, siblings, work and even your husband have expectations they need from you. Friends on the other hand love you for who you are, not because they have to. Friends meet the loneliness of the heart. Friends provide laughter and joy and someone to walk alongside you, listening in good times and bad.
#1 Inner-Circle Friends- provide intimate emotional and spiritual connections and are few in number. Some characteristics of inner circle friends are; trustworthy, mature, faithful, loves you despite your failures, encourages you to stop berating yourself over mistakes, listens but encourages thankfulness instead of compaints, and diplomatically helps you to see your attitude may not be in line with God’s Word. Inner circle friends require attention, diligence and emotional elbow grease. Just like a marriage they need honing, sweat and time. But the joy they bring to our lives is immeasurable.
#2 Outer-Circle Friends- are usually greater in number. They are no less valuable, but different. We do not depend on them to commiserate with or understand when we are woeful. They help when you are sick, run the kids to activities,and the ones you call for a brisk walk after dinner. They may share a like interest, bring laughter and comfort and may come to our daughter’s wedding, but we might not know each other’s birthday. They bringa sense of belonging in a woman’s world.
#3 Balance the Type of Friends You Choose- Don’t be confused with being a true friend and a really nice friend. Often really nice friends are friends who never ask about you, or are in a constant need of help. They are takers and in crisis mode most of the time. Friends like this will suck you dry as they provide no balance; it’s all about them. True friends give and take, they help each other in crisis, bring their own giftedness, help us laugh and are there to wipe the tears and pray with us. They bring conversation, are a good listener, empathize with us and even argue with you. True friendships complement each other.
#4 Loving a Friend Takes Hard Work- Working at your friendship should be a habit. Loving a friend means interrupting your schedule when a friend is in crisis, speaking boldly in her defense even when we are angry, and ready to step into her shoes if tragedy happens and she can’t function at her normal level. It means being there for her and her children. Friends provide emotional support, make us laugh when we want to sob, challenge us to new feelings and encourage us to trust and love. They know when to push or yank, or simply give us a nudge to stay on the right track when we want to run. Friends forgive and never take revenge. They love us when we feel everyone around us has left.
Conclusion and Questions to Ponder- Where and how are you spending your free time? Are your Outer-Circle friends taking up a big percentage of your time? Are you nourishing Inner-Circle friends who share your same faith value and help hold you accoutable? Does Facebook nourish inner circle friends? Do your children see a mother who is serious all the time, always sacrificing, and who doesn’t have time for laughter and joy? Do you wake up in the morning with dread, worry and an overriding sense to to control your day? Maybe it’s time you go out and have a cup of coffee with an inner-circle friend. Proverbs 27:9 Oil and perfume make the heart glad, so a man’s counsel is sweet to his friend.
If you want to see the characterics of a true friend, read Mark 2:1-5
Praying for you, Laura Rawden, Mentor Mom