Written By: Tayler Cathrine
“Do not…I repeat, DO NOT MAKE ANY FRIENDS while I’m gone. “Okay,” my husband replies. I mean it, do not join a small group. I guess you can go to church but don’t talk to anyone…no friends…I repeat, NO FRIEND MAKING!!“
Have you ever thought this or even said it, like I did? This was my warning to my husband that I couldn’t take another heartbreak from making friends and promptly leaving. I knew we would only be at our new location for about nine months.
Now, do you think my sweet, friend-loving husband listened?! NO…NOT AT ALL!
Not only did my husband find a church and join a small group, but he also invited friends (a military couple) to live with us.
As the good wife that I am, I reluctantly began attending the church and small group. And even making friends…what?!
I know that you are supposed to connect with the community, a church, and military wives. BUT being a newer military spouse at the time, I had just gone through my second move at that time. The goodbyes or now, as I say it, see you later’s were hard. They still aren’t easy, but it’s a part of my life now. At this point, I am a pro at finding a church ASAP and getting connected, putting myself out there to meet other wives or neighbors. After ten years, though, I still get shy and want to hide in my shell, but I know how much better, fuller, and easier life can be when I am going through life with others and making friends that truly understand and become like family.
“Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another.” (Proverbs 27:17)
Some of my closest friends are also the ones that give me the hard truth. The ones who want to lift me up. The ones that have been there through my highs and very lows. They have sharpened me . They have watched me grow and they have been my biggest cheerleaders. If your friends create strife or drain you, I would have you reevaluate those relationships and see if they truly have your best interest.
“When iron is rubbed against another piece of iron it shapes and sharpens it. Similarly people can help each other improve by their discussions, criticisms, suggestions, and ideas.” (The Bible Knowledge Commentary)
The image of a chef using a rod of steel to sharpen a knife is a good example of using strong metals to improve the instrument.
Be sure your friends (present and future) sharpen you to improve you and not lead you into gossip or poor choices. I would even challenge you to see what kind of friend you are. When you and your friends support one another, it’s what gets you through these moves and settled in. It’s also what makes goodbyes so hard.
Although goodbyes are hard, those friends are worth every tear shed. I encourage you to meet your neighbors, meet the new spouse, ask a friend out to coffee, send a sweet note to a friend who lives near or far. Let’s nourish those relationships more than ever. This year has been unique, and I promise these gestures truly can make all the difference for that woman. Who doesn’t love a little pick-me-up?
Written By: Tayler Cathrine