- There's this one coworker that you talk to everyday at work. You have become the best of buds. You have shared some good laughs about situations at work and life in general. The two of you have also talked outside of normal business hours and genuinely enjoy each other's company. Yes, you consider this person a good friend, but then everything changes when you accept another job. At first, all is well after you leave, but then little by little conversations become shorter and fewer. Now months have gone by and your calls are not returned.
- You attend an awesome church. You speak to everyone and share hugs, smiles, and words of encouragement with those that have made your list of MFP (Most Favorite People... I made it up...chill!). Every week you get together with this group to fellowship and discuss the sermon and life's issues. After a while, this group becomes your tribe. You do everything together.... that is until God calls you in another direction and you move to a different church. Slowly, but surely people forget to invite you to their functions and the phone calls stop as your tribe exits stage right.
I'm sure I'm not the only one that has experienced one of these situations at some time or another. If you're like me, you were probably left asking yourself, "WHAT HAPPENED?". I thought we were friends. I know it's tempting to just stay to yourself in hopes of avoiding the disappointment and hurt that comes after losing "friends", but DON'T DO IT! Proverbs 18:24 (MSG) says, friends come and friends go, but a true friend sticks by you like family.
Some people are only meant to walk with you for a season and not a lifetime. There are some that are only there to teach you a lesson. Don't allow their exit to cause bitterness to take root in your heart and make you miss out on the divine connections just ahead. I have been fortunate enough to have a core group of friends that have outlasted some major transitions in my life. These are the people that visited my beside in the hospital without any concern of my church affiliation, occupation, marital status, etc. These are the ones that have stuck by me like family and I'm grateful.
There is a tried and true test to determine who your "Real" friends are and no it's not the test on Facebook. LOL These are the people that will stick by your side through your life struggles regardless of your church affiliation, occupation, marital status, FICA score, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part, (Okay, I got a little carried away, but you get the picture!). These are the people that deserve the title of FRIEND. Don't be so quick to give that title to those that have not proven themselves to be a friend and then maybe it won't hurt so bad when they decide to walk away.