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!

Deep Breath

You know those days where the so-much-to-do-so-little-time cliche is overwhelmingly true for you? When you are surrounded by fires and are spinning in circles, beating each blaze in turn? When you don’t even have a minute to think?

Our natural response to this is to go in swinging — do as much as we can as fast as we can and all at the same time. This is counter-productive. Our heart is in the right place, but our head isn’t driving.

Next time this happens, would you try something new?

Take a deep breath.

Take a deep breath and rapidly prioritize. I’m only talking about a minute here, no major planning. Just decide what needs to be done next and then next after that. Once you have a start on your priorities, start doing them. I’m all for plowing — but in a straight line! It works better than running in circles or a scatter-shot approach.

The deep breath gets you off on the right foot. Collect yourself a minute. So often we respond to others’ urgency or react emotionally before thinking things through. Remember, tension will work against you. Give yourself a few seconds to make sure you react wisely and think through your priorities well.

If you will focus on one thing at a time, knocking them off the list as you go, you will get more done faster. You will be thinking more clearly and be able to handle each item well. Once each thing is done, you have one less task to think about, and that relief will snowball the more you do.

DEEPBreath --Now Get it done!