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Friday, February 4, 2011

First Things First

There was such an overwhelming response to my blog on friendship last week that I decided I would camp out there for the next few weeks.  I am going to do my best to unpack the truths I've learned about women and friendship. 

As I said last week, I believe that the most important element of my best friendships is each of our relationships to God.  For me, allowing Him to fill all of the voids and not placing expectations on my friends to fill these voids, frees them to just be my friend, not my god. 

My friend Suzanne paints a beautiful picture of what allowing God to fill those voids looks like.  During an especially difficult time in her life she asked God to be so close to her that she wouldn't long for the earthly relationship that was missing in her life.  During that time of prayer and seeking God she says that she would imagine herself standing side by side with God. He reaches around her shoulder and places her in the curve of his side.  Then whichever way He turns she has no choice but to go with Him.  She is totally submitted to His movement and His will.  At the same time she is protected by Him.  I want you to close your eyes and see yourself there in the curve of God's arm.  In that position, totally submitted and protected, God is able to fill up all those empty places you may have.  And we all have them.  Imagine what your need is and submit it to Him.  What is yours?  Do you long for a husband that cherishes you? A child to fill your empty womb?  Or do you have a child and that child has made poor choices that are breaking your heart?  A parent that has disappointed you?  A friend that will be true?  A job, a home,  a cure, a breakthrough?  Let God take whatever your need is and fill it as He stands with His loving arm around you.  Move with Him as He moves. Give in to His guidance, give in to His protection, give in to His love, give in to His comfort.

You see I've learned that only God can fill those empty places.  Even though  I have a great marriage, Danny cannot fill the places that only God is meant to fill.  Even though I have beautiful children, they cannot fill the places that only God is meant to fill.  Even though I have earthly treasures, they cannot fill the places that only God is meant to fill.  My girlfriends cannot fill these places either.  And by not expecting them to, it gives us freedom to just be girlfriends.  I'm not asking them to fill my empty places that they were never meant to fill in the firstplace. 

In John 13:23 we read about the disciple Jesus loved.  Jesus had just washed the discipes feet, all of the disciples were eating a meal with Jesus. In John 13:23 the Bible says: "One of them, the disciple whom Jesus loved, was reclining next to him. "  Isn't that beautiful?  I love that word picture. This is the same principle my friend Suzanne talks about.  God wants us to lean in to Him.  To climb up in His lap and let Him love on us.  He is our Abba Father. 

I hope that you will imagine yourself this week in the curve of God's loving arm being guided and protected by Him.  And that when a longing fills your heart that you will allow Him to fill it instead of man (or girlfriend).


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