Tindell Baldwin »

Why Walking Alone isn’t an Option

Whenever I was a teenager and in one of my awful girl moods (happened a lot) my dad would famously tell me to “fake it”, we’d be in public and run into one of his friends and instead of saying hi I’d glare at them like they had shot my puppy. We’d leave wherever we were and my dad would tell me he didn’t care that some boy hadn’t Instant messaged me back (if you are under 14 please ask your closest adult what this means) I needed to be polite to people.

I think as a whole we have gotten in a rut of “faking it”, pretending like life is sunny when we are all secretly mad that life isn’t as peachy as we make it out to be, and although there are some days when the cashier just doesn’t need to know that you haven’t slept in three weeks because of a screaming baby, there should be people in your life that know more about you that what you put on social media. Someone told me recently that social media is just the “high light reel” of life and I have to say it’s changed my outlook on the whole thing. I can show you just enough of myself to make you feel like we are friends but not too much to make me feel uncomfortable. We don’t take pictures of our epic breakdowns after a bad day and splash it over the internet for other people’s enjoyment. We dress our kids and our life up and take candlelit images that make us look like we have it all together.

fake lifePINIMAGE (what’s on my fridge)

Well we don’t.

real lifePINIMAGE

 (what was actually happening)

Not a one of us and in some regards that is the beauty of life, of being known, and of having real friendships that will let you have a good cry before they tell you that this too shall pass. I figure if Jesus needed, or maybe wanted is a better word, 12 close guys to do life with than my deep need to have real woman to walk through this journey with is not a sin. I’m not talking about followers or likers or email buddies but real woman who know my stuff and I know theirs. Woman who can come over when my house is an utter mess and they won’t judge me.

I have noticed that whenever I open up about my real desire to have honest friendships that other girls feel the same way. When we drop the filters and are just ourselves something magical happens, we encourage each other, we love each other, and we speak truth into each other.

I think this isolating game we are all playing of changing what real friendship looks like is a dangerous one, because being honest is uncomfortable for a reason, it opens you up hear real truth. Vulnerability about who we are and where we struggle can be scary but I truly believe the scarier place is a life of never truly being known.

I love the harry potter movies (yes I know how old I am) and when I heard this quote it resonated with me.

“Well if I were You-Know-Who, I’d want you to feel cut off from everyone else. Because if it’s just you alone you’re not as much of a threat.”

-Luna Lovegood

We are powerful together, my weaknesses can be recognized by your strengths and vice versa but if we have no one pointing out our weaknesses then we can be convinced of a lot of lies. Let’s be honest our egos are a lot bigger than we give them credit for and sometimes I need to be taken down a peg (my husband normally gets this fun little task). We need each other on this journey, we need to hear every now and then that we are wrong, we need to hear that we have missed the mark and we need to know when we haven’t. This is how we grow, not by pretending, but by letting people we trust close enough to us to point out our humanness and help us grow in holiness.

I truly believe this journey of life is meant to be walked with lots of people, some people will come in and out and some won’t but walking alone isn’t an option. The bible tells us to encourage one another (1 Thessalonians 5:11), pray for one another (James 5:16), and confess our sins to one another (James 5:16). I didn’t however find a lot of verses talking about staying in our comfort zones, not being real with our friends, and giving the correct church answers. You are uniquely you but you can be even better when you find girls and woman to challenge you.

 

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