I challenge you, take yourself out of your comfort zone. Make yourself vulnerable to others. Be willing to open up. Support your friends. Show them that you really care. Be there. Love. It could completely change your friendships and relationships. I have so much more respect for both of those two guys now after that. And God was in every part of that situation.
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Recently, I was at an event with some of my friends and we were all sitting around the campfire and everyone was sharing about themselves and opening up like I had never seen them before. I thought I knew the majority of them decently well, but I learned so much about each of them during this time. Toward the end, something happened that made me feel God and the amount of love and caring between friends that I was totally not expecting. It went like this:
Everybody had shared except for one guy who I had never heard open up at all. I wouldn’t have really been surprised if he didn’t say anything. Then, he started telling us about this stuff that had been going on for the past 4 or 5 years, but he didn’t ever want to tell anybody about it because he didn’t want to think about it or talk about it or basically acknowledge it. It wasn’t anything that was his fault or that he could do anything about, but just a situation where he was hurting. When he was done sharing, we started to pray for him because we care about him and wanted him to know that we are here for him and all. While we were praying, all the sudden I heard somebody who was crying really loud and I couldn’t figure out who it was or what was going on. I saw somebody trying to leave the little prayer circle and I realized it was the roommate and best friend of the guy we were praying for. We asked him what was wrong with him and he could only say, “I had no idea. I had no idea.” He was so hurt because his friend was hurting and had been for years, and they had been friends for so long but he had never known the truth. After a few minutes, when we were done praying for both of them, they embraced each other and the friend told him that he could tell him anything.
It was one of those situations where a typical guy doesn’t want to look weak by opening up to his friends. Guys, for whatever reason, absolutely dread these sort of moments most of the time. Our pride makes us want to hold in all our struggles and everything that makes us hurt. Sometimes, it takes more strength to open up and admit that we don’t have it all together than to keep it all inside and do it on your own. When we let others in, we are making ourselves vulnerable. It is something that we never want to do because we want to be in control. The thing is though, that sometimes, we just need the help of our friends. We need to be able to admit that we want their help and that we need God’s help. The kind of love and caring that I saw from the friend of the person we were praying for was inspirational. I think those kind of moments are the most real, lasting moments we experience. Why is it, then, that we have such a hard time ever opening up to our friends? Is it because we don’t want to make things weird in our friendship? If so, maybe you should reevaluate your friendship. What is the point in being friends with somebody if you can’t actually be real with them and tell them what’s on your heart and what you need? Is it because we don’t actually trust the people we are talking to or do we just want everybody to be under the impression that we have it all together? If you want people to think you have it all together, good luck. Does anybody really think anybody has it completely together?