Today we will begin looking at the big oofs of friendship, the top ten reasons ships sink. And no, icebergs are not among them, although if you are giving someone the cold shoulder it may damage the relationship.
SHIP SINKER #1: POOR DESIGN.
Imagine, you’re trying to go to sleep, you look at your window and your neighbor is just standing in your front yard staring at your house. It’s a little uncomfortable, but not a big deal. You know your neighbor is nice, and not weird, usually. A while later you hear the front door open and someone comes inside. You slowly come downstairs and find your neighbor sitting on your couch, with a plate of your leftovers, watching your television.
Just like a ship will sink if it has some major design flaws, a friendship with a lack of boundaries has an expiration date. In a world of instant (and constant) communication we need to learn to say GOODBYE. Our friends do not require constant access to us. Most of us at one time or another have been in a conversation that just never ended. Then a time comes when we are busy, or not near our phones and we don’t reply. Now our friends are mad at us! We must do a better job of creating boundaries.
It’s easier to create boundaries at the START of a friendship than after boundaries have been crossed, however they are important. You may need to talk to your friend and say something like this. “I love that you’re my friend. I want you to keep being my friend and for that to happen some things need to change.”
SHIP SINKER #2: INSTABILITY
When a ship is experiencing instability, there is a good chance it will reach a tipping point and go down. The same can be said in your life. When we are unstable, we might try to pretend like everything is fine, only things are NOT fine. Eventually, it will spill out into our friendships and create problems. Our friends should be people who are there for us when we are going through stuff, be open with what you are going through, however, don’t expect your friends to solve all your problems. Talk to your family, youth leaders and sometimes we even need the help of professional counselors.
THINK ABOUT THIS:
- How are the boundaries in your relationships?
- What do you need to do in order to restore proper boundaries?
- Are there areas in your life that you need to ask for help in? If so, who are you going to ask? (You may feel like you don’t have anyone, but your family and church leaders love you and are not here to judge you. We want to see you healthy and will help in any way we can.)
PRAY: Father, help me to create proper boundaries in my friendship. Show me the people in my life that I can really talk to when I feel unstable.
Proverbs 18:24 (NLT) There are “friends” who destroy each other, but a real friend sticks closer than a brother.
Proverbs 27:17 (NLT) As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.
Romans 12:16-18 (NLT) Live in harmony with each other. Don’t be too proud to enjoy the company of ordinary people. And don’t think you know it all! 17 Never pay back evil with more evil. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable. 18 Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.
Proverbs 25:17 (TPT) Don’t wear out your welcome by staying too long at the home of your friends, or they may get fed up with always having you there and wish you hadn’t come.