Building Relationships – Tips for Tending Friendships
“You are not able to tend friendships through electronics. Social Media creates the illusion of relationships but hinders the connections necessary for building the connections that can help push you through life.” Relationships have been a big topic in my studies lately, and they crept their way into Sunday school. I shook my head at the words from the leader, and then he made the mistake of asking me if I disagreed.
I will be the first to admit that my journey through friendships has been different than most. My friends are scattered around the globe and have been for many years. Until social media came along, we only kept in tough through letters . . . and an occasional phone call. We like the written word better.
And now that social media makes it easier to connect, I find that the number of connections have grown even wider. The online friends I have made are no different from the ones I have in person: some are just to hang out with and have fun, some are all about inspiration and encouragement, and some would carry the weight of the world if I needed them to do so.
Words have power – even those shared on social media – and I it is through the words on Facebook that I found my inspiration to be bold in moving forward just when I wanted to give up and take a break.
When you are facing hardship, challenges and trials… I know it is so easy to focus on how big or how difficult the challenge is – two words can help you to refocus: “BUT GOD…” I encourage you, dear one, if you think challenge, if you speak difficulty, if you walk trials … pause and purposefully think BUT GOD, speak BUT GOD, walk BUT GOD. And suddenly, you will be at a crossroad that will change you forever.”
Psalm 73:26 “My flesh and my heart faileth: BUT GOD is the strength of my heart, and my portion forever.”
Romans 5:8 “BUT GOD commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”
1 Cor 10:13 “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: BUT GOD is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”
Phil 2:27 “For indeed he was sick nigh unto death: BUT GOD had mercy on him; and not on him only, but on me also, lest I should have sorrow upon sorrow.”
The words shared by Bonnie touched my heart and encouragement my soul. How is that NOT a relationship that reaches past the surface?
It is not where the relationship begins that makes the difference. It is what I invest in building and growing that relationship. What I put in will begin to awaken and grow into something that can end up being the nourishment I need just when I need it most.
Tips for Growing Relationships
– Make 90% of the actions and words about others instead of self.
– Invest the time to listen and hear others.
– Be willing to reach out even if it is not convenient.
No matter where your relationships start, these tips will help them burrow down into the soil so that they can sprout and grow into something amazing.
How are YOU tending friendships?