We all experience good days as well as bad. This day definitely qualified for the good category. One thing I had come to realize since being on my own was how isolated I had become from healthy friendships – especially friendships with women. Because I had lost sight of my intrinsic value in Christ, I had placed my measure of self worth into the hands of a human being whose own esteem was terribly skewed. As a result, most women had become a threat or a source of comparison.
Women in any segment of life can be mean to one another. Insecure women who base their worth solely on looks, position, or popularity often feel the need to be the center of attention. This becomes especially dangerous when these women have the need to make other women the object of scorn or the butt of their jokes in order to feel better about themselves. Because the person I loved fed into this game because his ego was being stroked, it became lethal to my sense of self worth. Add to this a lack of spiritual guidelines due to ignorance or choice, and it became a cold, cruel world in which to exist. In this world I made mistakes for which I desperately wish I could make amends, but the request for forgiveness would only create more heartache. So instead I pray for God to send someone into their lives to be the light I so miserably failed to be.
One of the best things I did after moving back to my home town was to return to going to church regularly. I have to be honest, in the beginning my motives were not spiritually driven. My father was a well-known minister who had served in the county for many years, so I started going back to church out of respect for him and my Mom. I continued going, however, because I was drawn to the evidence of God’s loving presence there. I began to grow personally and spiritually because of friends and family who carried His love outside of that church into the world in which I lived.
This particular day the sweet lady who led my women’s Bible study class had picked me up and taken me to lunch. I was terribly nervous and self-conscious before going. In fact, I almost called and cancelled. I am so thankful that I didn’t. Out of that lunch grew a friendship that strengthened me to let down my walls and build other friendships with women…especially women of faith. I learned how to be a friend and how to allow others to see my vulnerabilities and mistakes in order to encourage and befriend them as well. It was a process that evolved over time, and has been well worth effort.
Only in the recent past have I truly become comfortable in my own skin. It has taken much spiritual growth and a continued commitment to spending time on a daily basis with my Heavenly Father to understand and be reminded of my value in His eyes. I have learned it is only through the filling of His love that I can truly be confident to love others in the way He intends. My human insecurities still raise their ugly head at times and comparisons sneaks back in creating uncertainty and questions. Satan loves nothing better than to cause division and confusion among women. Ladies, we desperately need one another. I pray we learn to bind together in prayer, encouraging one another as we work to build friendships that uplift rather than destroy and that bolster our confidence in who God created us to be.
“Dear Lord, I ask that you give each of us the ability to stand strong together in Your love. Help us to see the unique value we hold in Your eyes and in this world in which You created us to live. Help us to realize our potential individually and together as women of God. Teach us how to be true friends by following Your example. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.”
Proverbs 31:30 Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing, But a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised.
John 15:12-15 This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.
Proverbs 13:20 Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.
Proverbs 15:22 Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.