One thing that has made me notice this lately is an incident that took place between a particular female friend and I. We had made a good connection when she and her husband joined our group a couple of years ago and we seemed to have many things in common. I really began to trust this person and value her as a friend. Not long ago I shared with her a stuggle I was experiencing- some personal issues with my family as well as my views on the church group "inner circle" debackle I was having. She agreed with many of my views. I even mentioned to her that I wasn't sure this church was right for us anymore and she shared her thoughts on the matter too. The interesting spin on this is that since that conversation, our friendship has been nothing but surfacy (is that a word?) and very distant as it seems we only talk in passing now. She has more obviously clung to those in the group I was referring to in that particular conversation and has drifted as my friend. What really hurts is that since sharing those thoughts she hasn't even followed up to see how things are or inquired about the status on any of these issues. Quite honestly I feel betrayed by a person who I placed my trust in. Now I am left questioning even more the future of our existance in that group/church.
Friendship just shouldn't be that much of an effort. Friendship should be comfortable, fun, encouraging, trusting, forgiving, and loving. So, to combat these frustrations, I have made the effort to nurture the "old" friendships that were formed long ago...making time & plans with the friends that know my heart and care about me and my family. Although this makes me feel better it doesn't take away the hurt, frustration and confusion I feel at church. I talked to my sisters about this and my older (and my I say wiser) sister said she could feel compassion for what I was feeling but certainly couldn't relate. She has not seen these issues at her church...and isn't that the way it should be? So what do I do? Is it even possible these feelings will go away- can the situation be fixed? I don't know. My brother in law also gave me some food for thought when he mentioned the age-long question, when are we going to stop trying to please others and start pleasing God? Am I truly seeking to enter into the frienships to glorify God or am I wrapped up in the immature popularity contest to just fit in? Everybody wants friends...but at what cost?
...if you made it this far, thanks for reading! The ranting is now over (until next time...)