Time with Friends

Do you feel the need to have regular time with friends but aren’t sure how to make that happen? Sometimes we tend to be ships passing in the night with friends we know and love. Solid friendships can withstand those times, but they do fail to enrich our lives during that same time.

How can we intentionally keep the blessings of friendship part of our daily lives?

  • It may help to make a list. There are some people we want to prioritize, and the process of thinking that through and writing down names can help our focus. Also, this list will work well during your personal prayer time if you would like to regularly pray for each one.
  • As usual, schedule time. Maybe you need two hours a week dedicated for coffee or playdate or writing letters. Maybe you need to set a daily reminder (or alarm) to text encouragement to someone. Make whatever fits best for you part of your calendar so that you have a reminder and time blocked to do it.
  • Reach out. Make it happen. Don’t wait for someone to invite you to go for a walk — ask away. It may be awkward to start a new friendship, but both of you will be glad and richer after you get going. Be the hero!
    Check in on friends regularly. You can stay in touch whether it’s your turn or not.
  • Love freely. Your schedules will not always mesh, but that isn’t a personal slight. We’ve all said something that landed the wrong way; give the benefit of the doubt in conversations. Share your time and grace and encouragement as freely as you would like to receive it.
  • Combine chores. Meal prep can be done together. You don’t need coffeeshop coffee to chat — laundry can be folded between sips at home too. You want to walk daily, but you can call loved ones while you walk. Get creative and use what you have.

Being intentional in this will be rewarding. Enjoy each moment!

Time to Plan

The plans of the diligent lead to profit
as surely as haste leads to poverty.
(Proverbs 21:5)

Most of the time, when we are caught up in the rush of daily life, it seems like too much trouble to stop and make a plan. Usually, we put off serious planning because there are so many other things that “have to be done” we think there is no time left for planning ahead.

But that’s not true.

Slow and steady progress gets us farther than quick and dirty in the long run.

Taking the time to think about what we are doing and where we are going makes sure that we are making the best use of time, doing what is best for that moment. Instead of just doing something, we are confident we are doing the right thing.

You are moving when you tread water AND when you swim, but those two activities serve entirely different purposes. Are you doing the one that is most effective right now? Furthermore, swimming away from shore isn’t all that helpful when the boat sinks.

It doesn’t have to be a full weekend planning retreat. A few minutes at the beginning of the day go a long way toward productivity and maintaining priorities. An hour once a quarter is almost always available, if we value the results.

I assure you, take a deep breath and think about where you are going and how to get there. It’s worth it.