Do You Have Ugly Friends?

In a letter received from a reader I once again was hit with a familiar issue amongst women – seems we moms have issues and hurt feelings that come up over our friendships with other women. A lot.

Yeah, I have been there – I get it…totally.  But, through the years I have learned to recognize that maybe the issue is not so much one persons fault, but a failure of each person to understand the true nature and meaning of friendship.

Will you allow me to meddle a MOMent?

“A friend loves at all times…” says Proverbs 17:17

But is that what we really do?

Or do we love only when we feel loved?  Are we guilty of loving only when that friend is in a good mood, or when that friend calls us and includes us in fun plans?

If we want to follow the inspired word of scripture maybe we need to consider our personal misuse of the word friend.

I used my handy tool feature on my Mac and found that friend is defined as “somebody emotionally close, an ally” whereas an acquaintance is defined as “to know somebody slightly.”

Those two definitions set me to wondering if on occasion when I hear women struggling with a friend relationship maybe it is because they have their vocabulary confused.

So it begs the question, do you have friends in your life or do you have acquaintances? I think for me sometimes the reason I feel that “ache” is because I “want” the friend, but because of my lack of intentionality, what I really have is an acquaintance.

To be “emotionally close or an ally” with someone you have to be open, vulnerable and transparent.  Without those important nuances you fail to form a friendship and instead you form an acquaintance. It’s very easy to get your feelings hurt by an acquaintance.

The term I use for this is a bit blunt, but the fact is the closer in relationship you get with someone the more they see your “uglies” and that is a scary thing for most of us. That revealing of self is uncomfortable.  And when you see someone else’s “uglies” their uglies can make them harder to love, but in actuality it makes the relationship sweeter – because ultimately you feel safe.

There is security in knowing that someone can see who you really are, at your very worst and love you anyway.

It’s a window into God’s love for us. He loves us though we are still sinners.

If you have not made the effort to love someone in spite of their uglies, or be loved in spite of your own uglies – try. It is so worth it.

 

 

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