Since coming to Guam I’ve grown very close to God in a best friend type of way. We share a lot of sarcasm, staring contests and the occasional “psycho Bethy freakout”. We share quiet moments of looking thoughtfully into the distance, snide remarks about laziness and pride, long conversations in the car and sometimes even the low low brokenness of a spirit dying to itself.
I keep writing this section of blog and not going the direction I want to go.
Friends are really essential. But the problem with how essential friends are is how flakey people are.
Actions speak louder than words, because I’ve been learning for a long time that the people who deserve to be in your life are not the people who occasionally say that they miss you. The real friends are the ones who reach out and pick you up when you are the most pathetic, the ones who probe into your life even if you haven’t seen them in years, the ones who invite you along when they’ve only known you a few days.
I’d like to highlight three friends, if I could.
Marilyn. The hard and cynical one who scared everybody into submission, but came to my room every night after chores just to sit in my comfy corner and talk. Who sat on the floor behind my desk and asked my advice about life. Who persistently and relentlessly loves me and somehow makes it seem like I’m the one constantly encouraging her.
Jason. The one who always extends his friendship no matter what happens, just because he values mine. Who challenges me to push through my self-pity and meet my goals, but also challenges me to stop freaking out and trying to control everything in my life. The one who has seen some of the worst days I’ve ever had and forgives instantly.
Liz. The girl who loves me like we’ve known each other for years and yet I have no idea why she thinks I’m cool. The one that I actually feel like I could talk to on the phone for hours about absolutely nothing, even though I’m completely stunted when it comes to small talk. The girl who was one of my only friends in college and reached out to me when I most needed her.
There are others, but the point is that I’ve learned a lot about friendship since being here. First, to not tie up my self-worth and happiness in humans because they suck. Secondly, to find the ones that don’t suck and appreciate the heck out of them. And third, to let my true best friend be God because actions really do speak louder than words, and when the actions speak they give meaning to the words.
So think about what you say. Are your words empty and meaningless promises that never actually get fulfilled? Have you looked to see who you may be hurting when you don’t follow through? Is there anyone who has reached out to you that you didn’t take the time to respond back to their invitation of friendship?
One more friend highlight.. my Mom. Because I think we’ve talked more in the last three months than maybe in my whole life. Because she sends me random articles that I only read half the time, but they let me know she thinks about me. And because I’ve learned to appreciate even the things about her that most tick me off.
Do you have real friends? Can you name three reasons that they are important in your life? And is God the friend you hold closest to your heart, who hears your secrets and knows your pain or joy before anyone else? Think about these things and act on them.