Today I had a friend come up to me at church and ask me if I was ok and I felt free and vulnerable enough to say no, I wasn't. This friend of mine is the real deal. We don't talk every day...to be honest we haven't spoken or even texted in months. I'm not a high maintenance friend and when I say that I mean that when I'm your friend I'm there for you unconditionally whether we spoke to each other last this morning or three years ago.
Over the years I've come to learn which of my friends are the same way. My friend this morning is one of those friends. I won't mention her name because, she doesn't need or want the attention. She is one of those people that will be your vocal supporter and a knight in shining armor on the down low. She's a hands on problem solver. When she says she loves you and your family, you KNOW she means it. It's something about the look in her eyes. She's safe. I've never seen her turn her noise up at anyone. She's level headed and wise. She's kind and generous and selfless.
In other words, she embodies and walks out Jesus' love and I'm blessed that she pours it out on me. So when she looked at me today, after not speaking in several months and asked me if I was ok I was able to say no. That is what a safe friendship looks like. She just knew and squeezed my hand and said we would meet up this week. As I fought back the tears, I felt a huge wave of love, relief, and gratitude. Grateful that God has placed a friend like this at exactly the moment I needed it. To be able to be real and genuine and admit you're not ok is a luxury in today's society. You know it. I know it. We live in times where wearing masks and putting up the highlight reels of our lives on social media is the norm. Vulnerability many times equates weakness. And that is not ok.
Without vulnerability and taking off our masks, there is no healing. See, today's two minute encounter reminded me of another time God sent me a friend to ask if I was ok. It was three years ago at the gym. My workout partner, whom I wasn't close with asked me how I was...and I broke down. I was in tears, not knowing exactly what was wrong but knowing that I was not ok. Long story short, that day in the gym was the beginning of my journey of faith. That one conversation led to an invite to a class which the Lord would use to bring me to Him. This memory came flooding back to me today as soon as I said I wasn't ok. And then, all of a sudden I smiled and felt peace and hope. Almost as if God was sending me that sweet reminder that the moment I confront the truth that I need Him is the moment he can come in and bring the most amazing breakthrough.
Tonight I thank the friends that have created the safe space for me to not be ok. Thanks to them I can open my heart to healing and God's grace. No need to pretend, fake smile, or live in denial.
**This is part of the 31 day series: Confessions of a Faithonista**