You are not worthy of love. You don't make a lasting impression--you are forgettable. Why would this person want to be your friend? You are not enough: smart enough, have enough to offer, pretty enough, cool enough...
I hear these lies whispering in the back of my mind constantly. I used the believe them, sometimes I still do. These thoughts always nag at me and I have learned that I must face them armed with the truth:
You are worthy of love and friendship. You were created by your Heavenly Father who lovingly made you in his own likeness from nothing and gave you a heart, mind, body, feelings, and passion. You are deep and intricate and unique and beautiful. He made you this way. Believe that and be confident in that. Doubting this is doubting the hands that knit you together. He didn't make you to quietly slink through life without making an impression. He made you to be amazing so boldly be just that. You were given a heart to love profoundly, a mind and intelligence to offer wisdom and wit and advice, a body to be present in relationships and active in service, feelings to sympathize and share in joys and heartbreaks, passion to fight for and stand up for people you love....He gave you all of this and it is wrong and a sin if you believe the lie that you are not enough and withhold good things when you are capable of giving it. You are worthy of love and friendship and so are everyone else. So love them.
I vividly remember writing a letter to a friend one night a couple years back apologizing for being the crappiest of friends and it occurring to me for the first time that my lack of confidence in pursuing her and her friendship hurt more than just me. When I am left alone and not pursued by people I begin to believe that I am unloved and lonely which makes me feel "not worth it" which in turn prevents me from pursuing others....This is stupid. I am taking my hurts and insecurities and hurting others as a result--I deserve and they deserve so much more than that. So that is why I am preaching it to myself and telling you to ignore the lies and to just be a good friend. Be the kind of friend that you would want to have.
--When you think to yourself, "What if they're too busy and don't want to talk right now."... Call them anyways. If they are too busy then leave them a voicemail so they know they are in your thoughts and loved.
--When you feel like a nuisance for wanting to get together....invite yourself over to their house anyways. Don't you feel loved when you know someone is comfortable enough with you to crash at your house without a formal invitation? You should crash at their house sometimes and let them feel the love.
--When you hear that someone is going through difficult times and you begin debating whether you should offer help or "maybe they just want time to them self"...Help them. Text them and tell them you are there for them. Don't wait for them to ask for help....offer yourself to them. Tell them you will bring them a hot meal or watch their kids or fold their laundry. Actively pursue them.
--When a week or two goes by and you don't hear from someone and you begin to wonder if they have forgotten about you.....just quit it. Maybe they're sitting in their home wondering the same thing about you. So pick up the damn phone and call them.
I'm not naturally a good friend. I don't think anyone really is though...it takes practice and work. Being a good friend is exhausting and draining and takes a lot of juggling and effort and giving of yourself. But, the reward is so great. I have a small group of close friends who have rocked my world. Coming to this point in our relationship was something we had to fight for. I had to purposeful about it, and yes, even write it into my calendar and set reminders on my phone to interact with them (do what you gotta do). Every two days I text Christel and tell her that she is wonderful and loved and every week or so I write on Jenny and Matt's Face Book or text them and tell them that they are awesome. I try to send them cards often and drive up and visit them at least a few times a year even though we live so far away. Every week I text Angela and tell her I'm thinking of her and, even when I'm exhausted from work, spend an evening at her house at least once a month to see her and the boys. I call/email/FB/text Bethanne monthly so she knows I'm there for her and her kids. I get together and call Diane several times a month. With 1,500 miles between us, Livi and I have been pen pals for 11 years and text and FB often. Amanda is a sister and literally could move in and it would be totally cool.
It's a lot of work...A lot of people with a lot of their own crap and problems and needs and it's wonderful because I have a lot of crap and problems and needs myself. Community and deep relationships are so vital. These people know that I will do anything for them and I know that they will do nothing less for me. I know and they know because we have done crazy things for eachother. The reward reaped from investing in people is great. I wouldn't be the person I am today if it weren't for their love and influence and wonderfulness. I love them to death.
So that is what's been on my heart these past few days. People are amazing and important and that includes you and me. So, without apology or second-guessing be the best friend you can be. We could all do with a little more love.