How are you doing?

I had lunch yesterday with a dear friend. Halfway through our sharing of the day-to-day, it became clear that God provides these moments of exchange to facilitate wellness and soul care, embrace our spirit, heal our wounds, and build our faith. The exchange between friends is a beautiful dance at times as we release and receive, release and receive, building the relationship upon the glorious facets of God’s character as He imparts His Spirit into the conversation. We listen, learn, encourage, and confirm each other’s significance to God, to our calling, and to others.

There are times, more so often, that we vent our frustrations over ministry, marriage, motherhood, and even the struggle of maintaining our own mental health. I have experienced therapy numerous times and as an Addictions Specialist and Pastor, I have consoled and counseled many. But, there is something so special about the counsel that comes from a dear friend.

Romans 1:11-12 NRSV, “For I am longing to see you so that I may share with you some spiritual gift to strengthen you— or rather so that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine.”

Those deep friendships are treasures from Heaven. They are friendships that are priceless and therefore we take the initiative to care, nurture, and provide for them in ways that honor God and each other. I pray you have her in your life, that sweet sister who makes you a priority, loves you as you are, in all your moods and seasons, in hardships and health, in joys and sorrows.

If you are searching for that unity with a sister, then I encourage you to ask God to open your heart and eyes to seize opportunities to connect with others. Sometimes, those friends come with backgrounds, interests, and gifts we didn’t expect.

Friendships can be forged between different ages and even within family. Ruth became friends with her mother-in-law and they became family, looking out for one another throughout their lives. Naomi was not the nicest person and wasn’t open to Ruth’s desire to befriend her, but, with Ruth’s persistence, a strong bond was formed between them.

Ruth 1:16-17 – “But Ruth replied, ‘Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the LORD deal with me, be it ever so severely, if even death separates you and me.'” (NIV)

I see Ruth’s friendship with Naomi as God providing for both their need for family. Through our friendships our deep human needs are met like love, acceptance, security, and purpose. May you be blessed with the joy and love that comes from friendship. I pray you know that you already have that in your relationship with Jesus.