The Company of Women
“Friendship is a place where our hearts don’t have to try to work so hard to be heard and understood and accepted…. “
“Some friends we are called to fight for and some we are called to release…”
Each of these quotes come from a great book I am reading as a part of our Shoreline Church Sisterhood Bible study, called Becoming Myself, by Stasi Eldredge. I actually have already finished the book and am going back through it week by week for a refresher on what each chapter that pertains to that week’s reading homework holds. This morning, I found myself pausing and reading and re-reading the chapter on relationships. It’s actually titled, “The Company of Women.” I’ve highlighted and underlined and asterisked many lines through out this chapter – I’ve shared several really good nuggets above.
As I ponder the wisdom of this chapter, I am especially thankful for my forever friends – those who have been in my life for 20 plus years. These are the ones who’ve known me in the good, the bad and the ugly and yet they still love me and cheer me on in my successes and listen in my heartache moments. These friends I greatly treasure! I am also thankful for my newer friends who have my back, who are loyal, loving and forgiving – who let me be my silly, strong-minded, girly self and love me just the same. And I also can’t help but think of those friends who I thought were true friends, and yet betrayal or disloyalty pierced my heart and caused me great pain. Letting go of friendships that are not in our best interest is never an easy thing to do, I mourned a little for those relationships as I read through this chapter.
The truth is relationships among women really can be tricky. Maybe that is one of the reasons the Bible is so full of relational wisdom. From beginning to end we see how important it is to God for us to choose friends wisely and love one another well. Here are just two of the many verses on the subject —
Proverbs 17:17 says, ” A friend loves at all times..”
Ecclesiastes 4:9-10, “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!”
God wanted us to know how important friendship is to living an abundant life. And he knew we would need help when it comes to navigating the waters of relationships.
As I think on these things, I think back to Sisterhood and how beautiful it is to see women embracing the concept of gathering together to share the burdens, joys, and cares of life. I treasure the stories of women who’ve been wounded and yet decided to open their hearts again and give love a chance. I relish the times I’ve seen one of the girls take a risk and share something difficult that could push others away, only to see the girls rally around her in acceptance instead. I love seeing women taking a risk on love, letting their safety walls down – choosing instead to do life together.
There is probably much that could be said on the company of women. I’d love to hear from you – what does this topic stir up in your heart? How do you navigate through the difficult moments of friendship, and what are some ways you celebrate and cheer your girlfriends on?