Hello you glorious Friday morning, you.  I greet you and welcome you.  May you bring me something delicious to eat.  🙂

Every good break must come to an end.  I took a few weeks off of blogging because, well, I’m still not quite sure.  My heart has been churning a lot lately and sometimes when that happens it’s like you’re processing too much to crack into it and let just a little out.  If you crack in too early, some really half-baked stuff will ooze out. Or something like that!

But every single Friday I think of this space.  Of you and how you read my words…and how honored I am by that.  If you ever want to write me some words of your own, I’ll read them.  I promise.

So can I tell you one thing that has been in my heart recently?  It’s the one Scripture that I have come to believe is so key to becoming a person capable of true, genuine, and healthy friendship.

Romans 12:15 “Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.”

I think that’s it you guys.  I think that there isn’t a whole lot more to it than that.  I mean, of course there is, but when it all comes down this skill is the essence of being a friend to someone.

Truly, I’ve seen and experienced some of this in action recently and wow, it’s amazing.

The verse contains only a few words but holy moly, to become a friend who lives that out is certainly not easy all of the time.

Think about it:

Rejoice with her, when she rejoices.  That means, when she has something beautiful happen to her, relish it together.  Even if you’ve had a hard day.  Celebrate the breakthroughs for her when you’re in the trenches yourself.  Acknowledge the small victories that may seem small to someone who doesn’t know her very well, but you know they mean a lot to her and her story.  And that really means – deal with the issue of jealousy.  Yeah.  Jealousy will stand in the way of true rejoicing with her every single time.  Jealousy will rob you of your capacity to offer full friendship to anyone.  By the grace of God, it is possible to see jealousy bound and gagged in your heart.  By HIS grace!

And then the weeping…. I don’t think that this means to automatically cry when your friend cries.  I think it means, don’t run the other way when she’s hurting.  You wouldn’t want to run the other way for lack of caring.  We run because it is awkward to be close with someone who is hurting.  Because we know that they often don’t need us to fix it and we couldn’t even if we tried….And to just be with someone in the valley when there is nothing to do but pray and be is one of the most beautiful gifts you can give.  I had friends do this after we lost a baby at 11 weeks.  They didn’t have answers and they hadn’t experienced it, but they said they just wanted to come be with us.  Words can’t express how much that meant.  One of my mentors is walking this out right now.  A new friend of hers recently lost her oldest child…his life ended far too soon.  I mean, that is the kind of pain that hurts to even think about for more than two seconds.  But Carrie is choosing to not pull back from spending time with this mom.  Even though she has no capacity to fix her friend’s pain, she is simply being in it with her.  Now that’s friendship – brave, raw and true.

Lord help us grow in this!  Help me to grow in this!

My friend, I hope that this is something simple to grab onto as we pursue growth.

Happy weekending y’all!  Much love to you!
Abi