Friendship: For a Reason, Season, or a Lifetime

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Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one.
— C.S. Lewis

One of the most difficult things surrounding moving every few years is the ability to find quality and lasting friendships.  You spend enough time at a base to find your community and then the military tells you it’s time to move.  Every move, you question whether or not you’re going to find ladies just as amazing as your last assignment; and you question how many people you will actually keep in contact with.

Sure, I will follow you on Instagram or Facebook, but are we really going to “keep in touch” like we promised? Well, that just depends…

Were we friends for a reason, a season or a lifetime?

I know that may sound harsh, but not every friendship can be for a lifetime. Some friendships start off great and then die down. Other friendships last for a few months or a few years and then no longer serve a purpose. Sometimes, on the rare occasion, you find your female soul mate in the form of a sister from another mister, a best friend whom you will grow old with and become a part of the family.

If you think back to any of your past friendships/relationships, can you identify where people belonged? Did you have a friendship/relationship you thought was going to last a lifetime, but didn’t?

First love ring a bell? How about the best friend you had in middle school?

In hindsight, I see the purpose they served and I am thankful for the time I had with them. No regrets.

Some friendships come into your life for a reason.

Some friendships come into your life for a reason. These friendships serve a purpose or meet a need. When that purpose has been fulfilled, or that need met, the friendship dissipates into a distant memory. This isn’t a bad thing. It’s not like you intentionally befriended the rich girl just so she can buy you those red bottom heals, or the jujube pump bag you’ve been dying for but your hubby wont let you by (it really is the holy grail of pump bags). These friendships happened naturally. Maybe you met them during a short business trip and they were your comfort friend in a scary place. Or maybe you met them in a gym class and they motivated you to finish the workout. These friendships were developed for a reason, a purpose, and once that purpose disappeared, so does the friendship.

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.
— Romans 8:28

Some friendships come into your life for a season. 

When I lived in Illinois, I attended one of the best churches I had ever been to. I was involved with many ministries and volunteered any chance I could get.  Through the church, I met many amazing women who filled me up, mentored me, and befriended me during a time when I was very much alone. My first duty assignment was two states away from my family and 735 miles away from my boyfriend.  These ladies came over for dinner often, and we would laugh, cry, and pray about any and everything.  I learned so much from these women and truly believe they helped shape me into the wife and mother I am today.

After 2.5 years, I moved out of the country to finally join my hubby. Slowly, but surely, those friendships ceased to exist. Nothing bad happened. In fact, a lot of great things happened, but God brought these ladies into my life for a season only.  In retrospect, those friendships served a purpose. The purpose was to help me on my journey of developing my faith, of discovering who I was in Christ. I still follow them on social media and think of them often.

I look back at most of those friendships and am so thankful for everything I learned.  Those ladies poured into me and allowed me to grow more than I ever thought was possible. I knew that most of those relationships would not survive a PCS, but I was okay with that. I knew that God had a purpose for each and every one of those ladies.

Some friendships come into your life for a lifetime. 

When we are fortunate, we sometimes make a friend or two that will withstand a lifetime.

A friend who overlooks your brokenness and admires the beauty inside you.

A friend who is open and honest…. who tells you when you’re wrong in a loving manner.

God brings certain people into our life to stay for a lifetime.

In this arena, I have been blessed.

These friendships are the ones that you can go a while without talking, but when you catch up, it is like nothing has changed. These are also the friendships that you will go out of your way to spend time with them even though you only have a few days to spend back home. Sometimes, these are the people that you call in the middle of the night, asking for prayers because you feel so broken or so tempted that you don’t have the strength fight the temptation alone. And when you are extremely blessed, these are the friendships that you pour your deepest secrets or embarrassments, because you can trust them to pray for you and hold you accountable.

I reflect on all the people in my life, those that lasted a long season, or a short reason, and those who are currently still in my life, and I am in awe.  Through military moves across states or across countries, through pregnancies and miscarriages, through heartbreak and marriages, these friendships have all shaped me in one way or another.

Had I disregarded any of them because I knew they weren’t meant to last a lifetime, I would have missed out on so many blessings.

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How To Get The Most Out Of Your Friendships

♥ Recognize that some friendships are only meant for a reason, others for a season, and few for a lifetime.

♥ Don’t harbor bad feelings when friendships dissipate. Instead, recognize the hidden blessings they provided you and continue to nurture the relationships you have control over.

♥ Maintain realistic expectations that sometimes, you may have expected a friendship to last a lifetime, but in reality it was only a season. Although it may hurt, God is in the midst of your relationships.

♥ And no matter the category, cherish your friendships. You never know when a friendship for a reason turns into a friendship for a lifetime.

 
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Can you reflect on your relationships past or present and identify the blessings?