A prayer for friendship: because we’re messy

I had coffee (+ refill) today with one of my closest friends. Our conversation played all the notes on the friendship scale from random shallow-ish tinkling minors (like, we need tans before December) to deep soul-ish resonating majors (like, intentionally managing friendships in a cluttered world of complicated connections and sprawling social and real-time networks and diverse agendas). So I wrote a prayer – sort of like this one about motherhood – about the friendship thing. Not about needing a tan.

Father God,

Made in your image we’re wired for friends. I’m amazed and made little when I think how you’re a King but you stooped to be a Friend. How you didn’t need us but you made us though you knew we’d mock and cold-shoulder you and the clay was still wet but the plan was in place to send your Son, Friend of sinners.

Thank you for friends, God. Thank you for ridiculous fun and honest advice and being heard and seen and allowed to cry. Thank you for kindred spirits and inner-circlers and long histories to cherish and new pathways to plough and spontaneous connections to enjoy.

I want to make wise time-and-heart investments. As you order my private and public world, I ask you to choose my friends. Help me to hold them loosely palms open so that each friendship is worship. Help me to trust you with the place that each friend holds in the spaces of my life.

If the pace changes or the road splits or life happens and there’s distance – let it only ever be for the greater growth of new seasons and never for wound-licking and resentment. And if scars are unavoidable help me to find healing in grace not gossip.  

Help me to be happy and uncomplicated, undisturbed and undisturbing. (But with radar to pick up vibes and interpret the data.) Give me courage to ask forgiveness where I’ve messed up. Give me warmth and resolve and thick skin to keep on loving when I don’t get the in-jokes. Give me wisdom to know when it’s time to give space and when it’s time to hold close.

Use me, Lord. Even today, bring to mind that friend who needs prayer or encouragement. Or just caffeine.

Amen.

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