This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.
- John 15:12-13
Some of the best things in life are our friends. Those people in our lives who go through the highs and lows with us. We are created for friendships, and yet they are often the things that hurt us the most. Speaking from experience, friendship has been one of the most sensitive topics in my life recently. I am the type of girl who will show up for you no matter how many times you’ve hurt me, who is loyal to a fault and ladies, I am an Enneagram Type 2 so I am always living that “people-pleasing” life. Can you relate?
I think the relationships in our lives are the things that can either make or break us. Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about how in Luke 22:61 Peter denied Jesus and who He was in his life 3 times.
At that moment the Lord turned and looked at Peter. Suddenly, the Lord’s words flashed through Peter’s mind: “Before the rooster crows tomorrow morning, you will deny three times that you even know me.” And Peter left the courtyard, weeping bitterly.
Sometimes that’s how I feel in my own relationships. Jesus was the perfect Son of God who was about to die on a cross in the most unbearable way imaginable, and yet Peter still denied Him, he rejected Him. Now, that may be an extreme example, but even though Jesus knew Peter was going to deny Him, I can only imagine how hurtful that would be. I feel like similar things have happened in my life over the past few months, and it is absolutely crushing and I am still trying to figure it all out. I’ve been asking myself How do I love even when I feel rejected? How do I assume the best of them, the people who are so important in my life? I can be so quick to want to run and cut all ties because I’ve been hurt, and that’s when I have to take a step back and remember John 15. Jesus loved more than I can imagine, even Peter who denied Him. He still laid down His life for him and then even trusted him to go and share the Good News. He still trusted His friend.
As sisters we need to support each other, give each other room to make mistakes, and do our best to assume the best of each other. I’m preaching to the choir here, but if Jesus can daily forgive my mistakes and love me unconditionally, then gosh I need to start doing a much better job in my own friendships. We have to balance accepting and loving someone at their worst but also knowing when a relationship is toxic. It can be so easy to stop trusting and to walk away or place blame but girl, if you are being the best you that you can be in that relationship then that is all you can do and take it from a girl who HATES confrontation, sometimes it is needed and SO worth it. Having that tough conversation has saved so many of my relationships and turns out a lot of the times, the other person was feeling the same way.
We have been given the best example of what friendship should look like from Jesus and the way He treated His disciples, and if it means we have to literally “wash each other’s feet” we should take that step - even amidst our hurt - and try to see the best, pray for the best and know that sometimes the rejection in our life is God’s divine protection.
Reflection: 1. What is one friendship in your life that you are struggling with right now?
2. What steps can you take to see the best in or repair that friendship?
3. What is one example of something that you can go out of your way to do for a friend this week to show that you love and appreciate them?
Heavenly Father, Relationships are hard. You know this. I pray that You would help me to see and believe the best in my friends. That I would be able to love and serve them even when I am hurt by them. That we would represent You in our friendship and know that, no matter what happens, we are still loved by You. Because of the love you showed me I will never be alone and I thank you for the people you’ve placed in my life to remind me what your love looks like. In your precious name, Amen.
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