Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Life's Better When It's Shared




Life is better when it's shared with others. 

I used to avoid community because I didn't really understand the importance of it.

When you've been hurt in the past by best friends, you tend to move cautiously forward with future friendships.

Authentic community is hard to find, even for the most extroverted of persons (which I'm not). Finding someone that you can trust your secrets with even when it all falls apart seems near impossible this side of heaven.

Last year I discovered a group called (in)courage. And they spoke right to my heart of hearts on why I/we need community and someone in our lives to be real with. I was starting to feel like being alone was way more worth it than putting my heart and life out there for others to judge as they chose.

I had relegated myself to a party of one. I would be my own keeper and if I really needed someone to talk to I would talk to Trey, or my sister...OK mostly my sister.

But (in)courage gave me hope. Because the stories I read were the same as mine. They wanted authentic community but were having a hard time finding it. They had been hurt, but kept looking for it anyway. "Did other women really want the same thing as me, and struggle with it just as much?"

"Are we all really afraid of being found out and rejected, so we wear masks to cover up and reject others first before they can do the same of us?" 

"Is it possible to have grown up friendships without feeling like I'm back in high school?!"

YES!

God designed us for community, not to go on our journey's alone. Sure it can feel safer, but it's not better. Just as God said " it is not wise for man to be alone I will make a partner for him."

Women need community and were made for community.God knows being alone leads to failure, like a gazelle moving in a pack to keep from being eaten by the cheetah, so we need to surround ourselves with a pack to keep moving ahead, lest doubt and fear eat us up.
"A friend loves at all times and a brother is born for adversity"{Prov 17:17}
And, now that I know that I was made for community, I have to let others in regardless if they let me down or not, and regardless if I let them down.  I'm  learning to let go and trust God in this area.

 I have to.

Because in order for life to work, in order for dreams and goals to work I have to trust and let others in.

I seek friends~sisters

"But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother." {Prov 18:24} 

whom will hold me accountable when I get lazy or want to give up because things are getting too hard or taking too long. I can rest easy that I'm being prayed for and encouraged, and they can can too, because I will be praying and encouraging them as well. Kinda like life-cheerleaders.

One of mine is  Olivia, she is my online prayer partner and a budding photographer, and fellow dreamer. I am blessed to have met her and lucky that I have her praying for me as I am doing for her. Check out her site, she is also teaching an online photography class you might be interested in!

Will you take the brave first step of friendship today with me? It's scary and we might get hurt, but it will be SO worth it!

Call someone to have lunch or coffee with. Call or text an old friend you haven't spoken with in a while; send a card.

Someone right now may be wishing for somebody to connect with and you could make the step to a start of a beautiful friendship.










Another blessing is the Hello Mornings Challenge , registration is still open until Wed Jan 23rd. Need more people praying over you in your life? This is a great way to get that and help you get up in the mornings!



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"A gossip betrays a confidence, but a trustworthy man keeps a secret."{Prov 11:13}

26 comments :

  1. Oh, I love this challenge! And I love how you were so brave to heed His call into the sweet spot (most of the time!) that we call sisterhood.

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  2. I've tried to be more intentional in this area. Making online friendships is a more comfortable place for me. Local friends are more of a challenge for some reason. I do make those phone calls, though. I think it's so important to connect face to face instead of always over a computer screen.

    Blessings!

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    Replies
    1. online is easier, maybe because we are "safe"behind a screen, these relationships are just as important as ones in real life. Good for you for making steps at being purposeful! It can be hard to do, but worth it!

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  3. Love this. Thank you. I need to develop friendships in my life more purposely. I have gotten behind in god sized dreams....

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    Replies
    1. Hey Alyson! Can't wait to meet you in real life :) Don't think of it is as getting behind, just delayed, life happens, it's waiting for you when you are ready to start again.

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  4. Feeling really challenged by your words as I'm still holding on to my 'party of one' when it feels like everyone else is embracing sisterhood. I'm thankful for those small steps you share at the end - that seems like an achievable start.

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  5. I'm glad you felt challenged, it is challenging to reach out and try to create community, but I hope you do it anyways!

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  6. Oh, Alecia, I can so relate to this! I wrote my dream-team post on the same thing :)It is so hard to put your self out there when you've been burned so many times, but like you said, the power of community is vital...and I am slowly re-learning that. So grateful to be among such amazing women in this group!

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  7. Oh I get this...all of it, thankfully.
    And I didn't realize how much I needed friends older and younger than I am until I started getting active in the mentoring ministry in my church. To have another perspective/generation love on you regardless...wow. Okay--talk about a tangent!

    Beautiful post, friend. {HUGS}

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    Replies
    1. I'm glad you mentioned mentoring, I've been wanting to get into something like that I think learning from those farther along in the journey and from those just starting is great! You reminded me of something I've been wanting to do, thank you!

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  8. This is a beautiful post! So grateful you found (in)courage and God made our paths cross!

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  9. wonderful post! yes, we truly need community! I love (in)Courage, Studio JRU and God sized Dreams. It seems we are part of the same communities! Stopping by from Studio JRU

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  10. Alecia, what a great post - it is hard sometimes for us introverts...and it is so wonderful that God always has ways to meet us! Visiting from StudioJRU...

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  11. You've been reading my mind! I've been thinking similar thoughts lately, too.

    (Wandered over from Studio JRU, by the way.)

    :)

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  12. it is so true, women thrive in community, it was a big step for me to take, joining in online but it has been SO encouraging, i am going to pop over and see your friends site too.Visiting from Studio JRU.

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  13. Oh my goodness, did I need to read these words today. So encouraging for this quiet, introvert. Thank you for encouraging words. :)

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  14. Great challenge - relevant to all of us, I'm sure!
    Visiting from Fellowship Fridays... hope you have a wonderful friend-filled weekend!

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  15. Sooooo true!!! I'm sure most of us have been burnt. I remember moving to a new state, not knowing anyone and being so afraid of getting hurt again. I remember thinking "How do adults make friends?" We really do need community. Hiding out due to fear is not only robbing yourself but someone else of a really great friend.

    Stopping by from Faith Filled Friday.

    Falen
    www.UpwardNotInward.com

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  16. I think God made us to need friends. Excellent points here. I'm an introvert so have to work at opening myself up to others.

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  17. I love this encouragement, Alecia! The term 'life-cheerleaders' is such a perfect title. They are true blessings!!

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  18. Like you, I used to avoid community. My life was so unusual in so many ways that I never seemed to belong anywhere. But I found that it was me that was holding myself back. When I ventured forth, people were very welcoming and willing to take me as I am. Great post. New follower! Hope you'll follow back.

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