My son hates taking the extra time to lace up his shoes. It’s tedious. It takes extra effort. He says they work just fine unlaced. They’re pretty much on. They pretty much fit. They pretty much function.
The trouble comes when you step on a dangling shoelace and go hurling for the pavement, face first. Unlaced shoes are untrustworthy and prone to malfunction.
Sometimes our friendships are like unlaced shoes; they pretty much function, but they’re not as tight or reliable as they could be.
In today’s tech-saturated world, we’ve learned to get away with the minimum. Interaction means sending a quick text or “liking” a friend’s FB post (if you comment, you’ve really gone out of your way). Perhaps we squeeze in a phone call, in-between crying babies and hurried meals.
This isn’t enough.
Proverbs 18:24 (NIV) says:
One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin,
but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
If we want to build relationships that endure, bless, and stand the test of time, it’s essential to pay attention to details and put in the extra effort.
I love running! I assure you, one of the most important aspects of long-distance running is making sure you have good, reliable shoes. Shoelaces are by no means a minor detail. In fact, they can be the most important one!
Here are four simple ways we can lace up the finer details of our friendships.
- AN OLD FASHIONED HELLO! These days we are too dependent on text messages and social media to keep in touch. Instead, send a “thinking of you” card in the mail. There’s something special about opening the mailbox and seeing that colorful square envelope with your name on the front. That little extra effort goes a long way! And, she’ll have a pretty card to display on her counter reminding her that you care.
- GIRLFRIENDS CAN SEND FLOWERS, TOO! God gives us husbands and boyfriends to spoil us, but we girls can make one another feel special, too! If your friend needs a special pick-me-up after a hard week, send her a beautiful bouquet! Trust me, every girl wants to be the recipient of a floral delivery! Flowers can be a very personal gift, too. Whether your bestie loves tulips or carnations, imagine her surprise when she receives a whole bouquet of them!
- BE INTERESTED IN HER INTERESTS! Listen and take note of her wants, needs, and interests. Is there a book she is dying to read, or a CD she would love to have? Is there a new product she read about but can’t find anywhere? Is she wishing she had a babysitter so she and her husband could actually sit and talk over a dinner out? Surprising your friend with a thoughtful gesture or special gift are simple, heartfelt ways to make her day. If it’s babysitting, it just might make her year! And trust me, it makes a big impression when friends know we are paying attention to the smaller details of their lives.
- THE POWER OF PRAYER! Last, but certainly not least, PRAY for your friends! Our friendships need prayer. The story of Job demonstrates the hurt that’s caused when we fail to understand or communicate with our friends. Job’s friends didn’t seem to understand their friend at all — and their words certainly didn’t offer the comfort he needed. Job was hurt and bewildered, to say the least. But instead of becoming bitter and resentful, Job did something extraordinary for his friends. He prayed for them! In Job 42:10 it says:
After Job had prayed for his friends, the Lord restored his fortunes and gave him twice as much as he had before.
God honors our prayers – especially those we make for loved ones during times of adversity. If your friendship is facing hard times, PRAY! Jesus was always praying for his disciples, and we should do the same for our friends.
In case you missed it, there is also a Prayer Request page on my site. I would love to know how I can pray for you and your friends!
So come on, Ladies, and let’s lace up our friendships! Make them a priority. Pay attention to the finer details! And let’s build friendships that endure, bless, and stand the test of time!