Here’s a question for you that could literally change your life….
W H A T S Y O U R C E N T R E ?
The key to surviving friendships, is not making friends your centre.
Why? Because friends are imperfect, unstable, and human. They will disappoint you. Some will turn on you. Some will stab you in the back. Some will move away.
And if you’ve made them your centre, your entire world will feel as if it’s falling apart. Your centre is what’s most important to you, and what’s most important to you becomes the pair of glasses through which you view the world. If friends are your centre, your emotional life will hinge on how many friends you have and how they’ve treated you lately and the things they say to you. You’ll surrender to whatever they want…
That is why Jesus HAS to be your centre. His Word has to be the lens in how you view life. Because then when a friend does stab you in the back or moves away…your entire world won’t fall apart because it was never built on that person, it’s built on Christ…whose never going anywhere.
So here’s some survival tips on the ups and downs in friendships:
1. Everybody’s trying to figure themselves out. Just like you, your friends are searching for their purpose and who they are. This means “trying on” new personalities, clothing styles, attitudes and maybe even changing friend groups. It also means making a lot of mistakes in the process. Unfortunately, you and others can get hurt in the journey. So be quick to forgive, and see their heart behind their confusing sometimes hurtful actions. Most of the time, they probably don’t mean to hurt you, it was a bi-product of them going through something. Try to see where they’re at and understand their story, it helps to forgive and even brings on some compassion.
2. Alpha, Beta and Gamma. There was an article written in the newspaper in the US about a new kind of group of people in high school. There are the classics still; the Alphas and the Beta’s. The Alpha’s are the Queen Bees who “run the world,” commonly known as the popular girls. The Beta’s are the “Wannabees” who basically suck up to the Alpha to have an “in” on the little clique. But then there are the Gamma’s. They’re the girls most comfortable in their skin, not mean, very smart, and who think popularity is overrated. They don’t long to be invited to parties because they’re too busy writing articles in their school newspaper, or surfing or super active in church. They think having to wear certain clothes for people to like them or acting a certain way to fit in is degrading. Gamma’s are often made fun of, but they have independence and self-confidence so they don’t care. They have strong values and stick to them. Be a Gamma in the crowd. Be a Gamma in your friend group. Because a Gamma is who the world is going to look up too.
3. Squash Gossip. Gossip betrays friends, in fact not just betrays but destroys. You could have spent 3 years of high school building up your reputation as a good and honest person, but the second you gossip all that trust you built over 3 years is gone within 3 seconds. And it will probably take another 3 years to get that trust back. How do you squash gossip? If you hear something about yourself, go to that person directly and talk with them. If you have an issue with someone, go to that person directly. That’s what the Bible says. Posting things about someone on social media is not Biblical. That’s not how Jesus tells us to deal with conflict. If that person will not speak with you one on one, bring along a trusted friend. If they still won’t speak with you, bring it to the teachers or principles. We need to be God honouring in dealing with conflict. And remember, character will always shine through. If someone is posting things about you on social media, people will stop and think “that doesn’t sound like her.”
4. You can have tons of friends, but be careful who pours into you. In high school I had a big group of friends. I got along with many different friend groups. BUT, I had a small circle of people who I allowed to pour into me, and those were my Christian friends. We all need to be friends with non-Christians, if we’re not…how are we supposed to tell them about Jesus? People won’t listen to strangers! But while we’re building relationships with non-Christians, we have to be careful that their lack of values and worldview doesn’t spill into us. That’s why we need a core. That’s why we NEED Christian friends. The kind of people who hold you accountable when you’re doing dumb things. People who encourage you and build you up. People to speak truth over your life and remind you who you are in Christ. It’s not a bad thing to have a lot of friends. It only becomes a problem if you’re allowing all those friends to speak into you and give advice that goes against what Jesus says.
This article is from “The Top 6 Most Important Decisions You’ll Ever Make”