Day 3: The Friend #28DayChallenge

Thanks for coming by today! This is Day 3 of my 28-Day writing challenge. Today, I want to talk a bit about friendships. I’ve enjoyed great friendships through the years, and I believe that is the product of divine blessing and a mutual commitment to one another’s growth that my friends and I possess. I have also experienced seasons of intense loneliness, which I think are necessary for the formation of every person’s character. Sometimes, you do not know who you are until you are alone. In solitude, our true nature is revealed.

We all take on the shape of the interactions we have with others. Said differently, our personalities are products of traits built through various relationships, from familial and professional relationships to social and community relationships. So, friendships have a powerful influence on who we become and how we become that person. Like familial relationships, they influence what we believe and what we practice. But unlike familial relationships, we can choose who we connect with and how often we connect.

Naturally, we gravitate toward people we admire or feel a connection with, and friendships can be a powerful tool to steer our lives in the direction we want to go. Our friends can reflect our past, present or our future. They are a strong indication of where our minds are situated or what makes us comfortable. Because true friendships are not forced, who we make friends with say a lot about who we are. And even if they are not our true friends, who we spend our time with reflects our values, our priorities, and our sincerity.

Friends are those people to whom you gravitate in periods of intense emotion or clouded thoughts. When you are happy, sad, confused, or excited, you likely want to share your thoughts or feelings with your friends. While some people have different friends for different occasions, others have the same friend(s) for all seasons. Friends give you a chance to share your thoughts freely and receive honest feedback from others. Friends are those people with whom we love to share experiences. The best friends are like siblings to us, or even better. And those who have such close-knit friendships are truly blessed!

Sadly, people don’t always feel the same way towards each other, and someone you see as a friend or want to be friends with may see you just as a colleague or neighbor, or acquaintance and no more. Wisdom is knowing when to draw the line rather than foist an unwanted friendship on someone. Friendships sometimes grow stale because people grow in different directions, or because one or both parties were insincere to start with. Again, discernment is knowing when to pull back and avoid becoming a burden to another.

Friendships sometimes go sour because of offense or betrayal. Having a forgiving heart is important as with every relationship. Taking precautions to avoid future hurt is also important. Love should be freely given, but trust needs to be earned. Great friends are a gift from God, but they need to be nurtured through care and communication. No one likes to be the only giver in any relationship. We are all built through consistent giving and receiving.

And that is where I draw the curtain today…we go again tomorrow. See you, then!

Follow the Leader: Keeping Your Eyes on Jesus

Hello, friend! Welcome to part two of this series on fulfilling purpose. If you have not, you can read part one here. What I intend to emphasize here is simple – the only way to surely fulfill purpose is to follow the leader, Jesus Christ. The Bible variously commends the Lord Jesus as the “author and finisher of our faith”, “the firstborn from the dead” and “the forerunner”, who has gone ahead of us into the presence of our heavenly Father. There are at least three reasons why you should keep your eyes on Jesus in your pursuit of purpose as a child of God. We will look at each one in turn, briefly.

Continue reading “Follow the Leader: Keeping Your Eyes on Jesus”

Loved

In my lifetime, I have been loved.

I have been loved by men and women of all shapes and sizes,
Ages and stages, features and statures,
Some of who gave their substance while others gave their time.
They paid attention to my nonsense while listening for virtue.
They saw wisdom in foolishness, and perceived gold in miry clay.
They traded their worth for little and assigned value to little me.

Continue reading “Loved”

Where did it go?

Where did it go?

The spark in our eyes

As we went on the rise

Climbing fast to the top

Without time for a stop

The glow on our faces

The warmth of embraces

Our loud-ringing laughter

And never-ending banter

When we just fell in love

And the moon smiled above

The sparkle in your eyes

That could break through ice

Where did it go?

Toyin Taiwo © 2015