Hey all! I'm excited to share some new products I made for the Drift Shop today! I have made Friendship Fruit Note Cards that you can send to your besties who live near and far! My intention was to make these available in January so y'all could send them out before Friend's Day and Valentine's Day but life happens and plans were delayed. Regardless, these cuties can be used all year long! It is always great to let your friends know how much you care about them on a regular basis!
So let me give you some backstory as to why I was inspired to make these greeting cards. This past fall I listened to a podcast sermon by Tim Keller that REALLY convicted me. It was about the importance of friendship. I'm not going to go into too much detail of the sermon so please give it a listen to it here. I strongly recommend it!
In the sermon, Keller talks about how important and necessary friendship is. His main theme is that you will not make it in life unless you are choosing, forging and keeping terrific friendships. He talks about how friendship always takes the back burner in our society and is always deemed unimportant in comparison to all the other social relationships. In a liberal individualistic culture, a romantic relationship is deemed the most important relationship to have. This is so true in our culture. When you think of movies and songs and entertainment, typically they are about romantic love and rarely about friendship. I love Keller's observance of Hollywood's take on the Lord of the Rings. Tolkien's main theme in his book was friendship. The romance of Aragorn and Arwen was only in the appendices and not in the actual book but of course Hollywood had to play it up and make it one of the main themes of the movies since that is what our culture deems important. Now in a traditional conservative culture, family relationships are deemed the most important. It's funny though because in Proverbs 18:24b says "there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother". This states that friends can be better than siblings. Besides my husband, my sisters really are my best friends and I love them dearly but they can't fill certain voids that friends can. That is the same for them too, I can't fill all of their voids either. The fact of the matter is that friendship is a deliberate love. Friends choose you but family does not.
So why did this sermon about friendship convict me so much? Well my husband and I lead very busy lives and ever since we got married we have noticed that our friendships have suffered tremendously. I think as a newlywed at first you don't really care to hang out with anyone else but your spouse and when you do hang out with friends it is primarily with other couples so you can still be together. While I think that double dates and married couples' game nights are fun- it's hard for me to connect to the ladies in a real deep way when we are in mixed company.
In college and right after college I was a part of this small accountability group of about 7 girls that was called GUTS because we would spill our guts to each other- clever, I know. ;) After several years of us meeting, a few of us got married, several moved away and all our lives changed considerably so the group fell apart. Since that group, I have had very few serious and real friendships. I'm honestly embarrassed to admit it, but it's the truth. Most people would look at me and my ever so shallow but huge number of Facebook friends and think I am rich when it comes to the amount of friendships I have, but it's the exact opposite. I am an extrovert and it is ridiculously easy for me to make surface "friends" but not so easy for me to make deep down real friends. I love big groups of people and hanging out and throwing parties. (Sidenote: I realized after the Super Bowl Party we just had, it was the 4th party we have had in the last 2 months of living in our new home. I think I'm all partied out for a bit and I wonder what our new neighbors think of us, haha.) But it's strange because I don't really love one-on-ones with people, and if I do have a one on one with a friend, I end up asking the majority of the questions. I think I am scared of sharing my true thoughts and feelings and insecurities so I just mask it with confidence and curiosity.
Reflecting on the past few years I think a big part of me is also scared of getting close to a friend who will just end up moving away. Two of my bestest friends in the whole world moved away around the same time a few years ago and it was really hard on me. And then I got super close to another friend and she moved away soon after too. Also my job working as a campus minister can be hard and sad as well. Ryan and I get so close to our college students and then after 4 years (in many cases sooner) they are gone. So I am not trying to gain pity but I guess I am just sorting it all out and figuring why it's been hard for me to make and keep good friends.
My biggest problem of all is not having enough time and figuring out how to prioritize the time I do have in the right way. Like I said before, my husband and I lead very busy lives. If I were to list who I spend the most time with right now and who I am friends with it would be my family, my running/workout buddies and those who attend the church meetings I go to. Other than that I don't hang out with people outside of my obligated commitments. Between my full time job, my part time job of running Drift, my other part time job as a campus minister, being a full time wife, and now owning a multi-family home with an apartment that has needed several renovations before it can be rented, has really taken a toll on my personal life. And to put it frankly, I am not a "quality time" person to begin with, so this coupled with my busy life means that hanging out with friends, catching up via phone dates, emails, and snail mail is most certainly not one of my priorities.
Last week one of my besties who I mentioned had moved away informed me in a super loving way that I haven't been a great friend to her for quite some time. I was so thankful that she said this and was honest with me because it was something I definitely needed to hear. The truth is that if you aren't a good friend then you aren't going to have good friends. So I need to stop wallowing in my friendlessness and start choosing, forging and keeping friendships even with those who may not live near me. This week I am excited to send some of my dear friends who have moved away these cutie greeting cards to let them know how much I care about them even though my actions have said otherwise. I also have committed to starting up another accountability group with a couple ladies who are my age and in my phase of life and am very excited for it!
So remember this Valentine's Day that yes, your significant other is extremely important but so are your friends, and for those who don't have a significant other at the time being, have an awesome Galentine's Day this coming Saturday! And again please listen to the podcast because it goes deep into why we need friends, how to get them and keep them and how ultimately Jesus is our greatest friend who chose us! :)