I listen to the radio on my way to work. I used to listen to Alistair Begg every morning, but since my time has changed, I only hear a few minutes of him. If you've never listened to his sermons, and you have a local Christian talk radio, I recommend you try to catch him. You will be challenged.
Anyway, this week I was listening to KLOVE. Their morning show has been discussing My One Word. It's like a non-New Year's resolution. You enter into a time of prayer with God, and you decide what He wants your one word to be for the year. This will be a word that you focus on to bring you closer to God and to see Him in more things. The morning show has Lisa and Eric, and he finally shared his word Friday after offering up teasers for what his word would be. He didn't want to share it until he was absolutely certain, but he did share that it dealt with relationships.
Friday he revealed that his word was Deeper. He wanted to have deeper relationship with God, his family, and his friends. He said he realized that he was using his own insecurities to prevent him from reaching out to others...
I was immediately struck by something.
I am not allowing myself any new deep relationships. I have allowed my own insecurities to keep me from reaching out.
I had fabulous friends in Texas. The best friends of my life are in Arlington and La Vernia. I always said they took better care of me than even my family could have. They were a large group and they were through our church, and we all really looked out for each other.
I don't know why I have lived here since July of 2008, and I have failed to establish those bonds here. The only answer I can come up with is fear. I don't want to bother them. I think they are too busy for me. Most people here have lots of family close by, so I have convinced myself that they don't need more friends.
So, I don't do all of the things I did in Texas. I don't call randomly through the week, just to chat. I don't want to bother them. I am at work during the day, and I don't want to interfere with family time in the evening. I hate to take up their busy Saturday with useless chatter...I know I talk too much, and I'm hyper, and I realize that I can be overwhelming for some. So I've completely backed off.
I rarely invite people over for dinner. When we lived in La Vernia I always had company over. I had a Bible study group that met at my house monthly that doubled as a "ladies night out." I would cook an enormous amount of food, brew pots and pots of coffee and we'd stay up until all hours of the night laughing and talking. In addition to that I would try to have at least one couple over monthly for dinner. I have always loved cooking for people. I never want to eat out or carry out because I truly love fixing the big meal and sharing it with people I love.
Since we moved here I work the same amount of hours, but since I'm no longer floor nursing, my days are shorter, so I work more days. That makes me more reluctant to invite people over because I'm so dad gum tired. I don't want to go through the whole rigmarole of cleaning the house for company. I don't want to cook the big extravagant meal. I just want to collapse on the couch.
So, today I went onto facebook and I committed to going to a Sunday school class party in February. Even if it does involve volley ball...Which I am terrible at. Even if I do hate to participate in events that I can't excel at. I will make the leap and go.
I also plan to invite friends over for next Saturday night. I haven't decided who yet. Mostly it will be whoever can come. Maybe I will bite the bullet and invite several couples over and we can play a round of games. (Games I can win, mind you.) It's ridiculous that I don't do this more often. Every time I have made myself invite people over, they always come. And we have a great time...
So, after reflecting on the revelation God gave me on Friday I think that my one word for this year will be closer. I have made friends here. I just haven't made close friends. They are good friends, but I have failed to make myself vulnerable to them. I have refused to depend on them, or make myself dependant on their support. I know God wants this for me. I know he wants me to be able to call someone close by when I'm having a "I can't take it anymore day, I'm calling....to talk about it," instead of someone hundreds of miles away. I just need to make the effort instead waiting for them to come to me with a crisis.
Do you ever feel that way? Do you ever feel that you will wait for a person to be vulnerable with you so you can feel safe to be vulnerable with them? It takes a lot of courage to be real with someone. But I'm going to do it. I'm going to reach out and throw up my feelings all over the next person I meet. I'm pretty sure we will be friends forever as a result...
Don't you agree?