Ahhhh, the neediness factor. In my humble experience, we run the gamut with this one. Just as my pendulum clock swings back and forth several times a minute, perhaps we find ourselves somewhere between fierce independence and protection, and a sheer thrown down in exhaustion of our desire to be filled back up. The Lord has simply placed a very timely book, literally in my mailbox, and then onto my lap. I’m so grateful for the time of reflection and a glance down the road towards some understanding and healing in the area of friendships. I’m wondering if perhaps the Lord wants to share that same message with you today, or even someone you love? Will you risk the pain that can accompany transparency and vulnerability for the hope of freedom, stronger bonds, and even the thought of knowing love in the truest of forms?
Author and actor, Lisa Whelchel, has written a book born out of experience and a simple desire to share her heart. Friendships for Grown-ups, guides the reader in delving into this topic of neediness and in recognizing safe people. She shares about her notion of striving for perfection as a way to connect with people, only to realize that this very ‘shininess‘ acted like Teflon and prevented any kind of lasting bond. Lisa shares openly her successes, and her failures, and along the way, the people in her stories start taking on the faces of ones you know. Perhaps the Lord has something he wants to show you in ‘these faces’ as well? She doesn’t proclaim this to be a self-help book, a book with all the answers to all your questions, a direct set of rules to follow, she only ask you to open your heart to taking a glance at how you view yourselves and the friendships you’ve developed or not developed along this journey of life.
Funny thing is, as her heart became vulnerable to others, so was her heart more open and able to receive more of the love Christ has to offer. In her final chapter, Lisa describes the gift of Immanuel,
I am learning that an easy place to exercise my presence-practicing muscles in within friendships. When I am with a friend, I want to be fully engaged with her. Eyes connected, ears attuned, opinions on hold, mouth in neutral, heart wide open. The more in-the-moment encounters I have on the human level, the easier it is for me to be with Immanuel, in an incarnational way. Not worrying about the future or regretting the past. Not trying to think the right thoughts or say words that will cause him to act. Just being with him.
Are you afraid? Do you have reservations? Have you built walls of protection around your heart and stand guard very diligently? Though it may appear to be safe, what else could you be possibly missing out on? From one wall-builder to anther, I implore you to pray for God to help you to go there. Ask him to help you take one brick at a time. He promises us that he hears us. If you can trust in His timing, He knows your heart (after all He created it!), and he is gentle to show you all He has in store for you, but only if you give Him permission. I will be praying…
Have a wonderful day in Him! And get your hands on this book!
Disclosure of Material Connection: Thomas Nelson Publishers sent me a free copy of this book as part of their bloggers book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”