I’m so excited! This coming Friday I’m going out of town for a “girl’s weekend” with three of my girlfriends. It’ll only be a couple hours away, but having some time to share hearts, meals, hiking, and fun makes it well worth a short drive.
Studies are revealing more and more how friendships affect, not only our emotional health, but also our physical health. Yep. Hanging out with our BFFs can reduce stress, high blood pressure, and can even help keep your mind sharp. One psychologist, Janice Kiecolt-Glaser, says, “A good friendship is a wonderful antidepressant. “ Interestingly, it seems that God knows this too. The writer of Hebrews refers to this in chapter 10, verse 25: “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another.”
We need others to exhort us, comfort us, correct us. We also need others to laugh and cry with us. (Rom. 12:15) And us to them. “No man (or woman) is an island,” as John Donne said. God created us to be interdependent.
I tried to buck against this principle when I was younger, handling all my emotions, problems, even joys to myself. Come to find out all this does is stuff anger, depression, confusion, and self-doubt deeper into the recesses of your being. Been there, done that. Like when my father died. I thought I had been a “good Christian” in dealing with his death until four years later when I’m mad as all get out at God for taking my dad and leaving me alone. Needless to say, He was already very aware of my anger and fear and was simply relieved I had finally gotten it out of me. (He’s a really big God and He can take anything we lash out upon Him.)
So around the late nineties I began opening up myself to friendships. Even having my closer girlfriends hold me accountable to my actions and attitudes. Proverbs 27:6 even states: “Wounds from a friend can be trusted.”
Friendships take time to develop. And you usually don’t have that many close friendships because of that. So take the time to grab lunch, coffee, or a phone call with someone.
Finding that someone you can share your hopes and dreams with as well as your faults and disappointments is life-changing!
Science is only proving what God knew all along — we need each other. This is a link that has quite a few verses about friendships. I encourage you to check them out.
Meanwhile, I’m preparing in prayer for this “girl’s weekend” coming up. I’m sure we will share a little, laugh a little, cry a little, pray a little, and eat a little (hopefully not a lot). The four of us will get into the woods with God and His creation (with no make-up), then come back home to our spouses and families refreshed. It’s gonna be great.