To warm up, we’d like you to start thinking about friendship. Please read one of the following Boundless articles today (whichever one applies to you):
Do you agree or disagree with what the author says? How does it connect to your own experiences with friendship? Did you run across any new insights? Write some of these things in your Facebook Note.
Growing up, I had a handful of close friends. We saw each other frequently, though not necessarily at school (one of my best and oldest friends realized the other day that, in the 20 years we've known each other, we never had a class together). We'd attend one another's birthday parties, play basketball on weekends, and generally shared dreams for and concerns about the future.
Then we grew up, and everything changed.
I had one friend go with me to college. And he wasn't really a close friend, but the closest friend who decided to move away from home and attend the "large" state college. The distance and different cultures with which we were entwined meant I didn't keep in touch with many of my high school friends. Losing so many friendships also made me a lot more hesitant in the new friendships I formed in college ... so the majority of them ended when that season of my life passed as well.
So I guess I agree with a lot of the article. I can make friends relatively easily ... but I don't consider the people I work with, the people I climb with, or most of the people I'm connected to on Twitter and Facebook close friends because, really, we share very little of what's inside. It's easy to make a connection with someone and nurture a "sure, I'll do you a quick favor" relationship. It's harder to cultivate the kind of connection where two people truly care about one another.
A little over a year ago, my oldest friend (we've known each other for 20+ years) invited me to join a home group Bible study with some people from his church. I did join, mostly because I was looking for a place to belong and my church had few people in my age range for me to spend time with. We meet weekly for dinner and Bible study, but something amazing and unexpected happened at the same time - we began to grow some amazing friendships. I've gotten to know my friend on a much deeper level than before, and I've made some very solid, sincere connections with other men in the group, too.
I truly do believe that "intimacy created by sharing with godly friends is the path to deep friendships." It might take me out of my comfort zone to share on that level, but that's a necessary step I need to take in order to grow personally and to cultivate the kinds of relationships that will help me continue to grow.