[…for everything you do flows from it.]

Loss is hard. Things have changed. Things are always changing. So what’s the big deal, right?

In the last two years I’ve lost three close friends; Two of them passed away, and one friendship had changed in a way that was no longer positive: we kept butting heads.

I’m still trying to process what went wrong and how I could have handled things differently, but for the sake of peace we agreed to part company. I don’t do well with human losses. Especially close ties.

Lord, help me to be like Job and say…

“….The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised.” –Job 1:21

PicsArt_12-13-02.05.18(All pics in this post courtesy of Pixabay.com)

Cutting Ties

This wasn’t the only tie that was cut; I also cut email communications with someone who I was certain wasn’t going to be good for me. We were too far apart in our thinking. I would’ve loved to have been friends, but I’m very protective of the people around me. This makes me very careful about who I choose to associate with closely. 

“The righteous choose their friends carefully, but the way of the wicked leads them astray.” –Proverbs 12:26 

Bad Company

Bad company does ruin good morals. (1 Corinthians 15:33) Here Paul was speaking of close contact with false teachers who were negatively influencing the Corinthians thinking. However, we also have to be careful of fellow Christians who cling to their sin. It’s better to pray for such a person while keeping our distance than to be influenced by their behavior.

We’re also advised to have nothing to do with certain types of individuals (Titus 3:9-112 Timothy 3:1-9), and we’re taught that believers cannot form close intimate bonds with those who don’t belong to God. (2 Corinthians 6:14-18) It just doesn’t work. We risk being polluted by their way of thinking. Often, however, they simply won’t let us too close to them because of the things that we believe.

Emotional Attachments

As I get very attached to people, I take loss hard. I just love to love. When I originally wrote this piece I assumed it was a nurturing instinct and that my friends become my family because I don’t have a family of my own. Maybe that’s part of it, however, after doing a bit of digging, I’m doing a rethink. 

Instinct or Fruit of the Spirit?

Looking back I never became this attached or involved, but then I also struggled much more with social anxiety.  I was far more comfortable doing my own thing. Of course I’d still get lonely. No one is meant to be an island. We don’t do so well when we aren’t plugged into a reliable community. We need those close ties, encouragement and wise counsel. (Hebrews 10:24-25)

If my drive to love and nurture was never this strong, then this isn’t purely instinct; It’s something that’s grown in me as the Lord has drawn me closer to Him. Love–the way that God loves–is a fruit of the Spirit. (Galatians 5:22-23)

May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you.” — 1 Thessalonians 3:12

PicsArt_12-13-02.33.26

Discipline

Truth be told, I frequently find myself feeling quite melancholy. I’m still grieving those losses. However, I’m also aiming to NOT be so heavily involved in my friends lives. (The reason for this will be explained in a future post.)

I know that these adjustments will be good for me, but change is hard, and no discipline feels good at the time. It really doesn’t. (Hebrews 12:11)

Final Words: Defeat Evil

While I’m glad to know that things are growing in me as they should be, the devil can easily use our softening hearts against us. Because of my losses I know that I’m in a vulnerable place. As he ups his game plan, we have to adjust ours as well. Defeat evil by doing good, right?

Always gaurd your heart (which is your mind or your thoughts), but even more so when you’re at your weakest. Don’t join with someone who isn’t good for you to fill a void. Instead, fill your mind, even more so, with the truth. (Hebrew12:7-13) Accept God’s discipline and allow Him to draw you close to Him because He disciplines the ones He loves. Last, but not least, plug into a reliable community because it’s easiest for a predator to go after a lone sheep rather than one who is part of a flock. (Ecclesiastes 4:12)

Discipline is always painful. However, it’s for our protection and the protection of those around us. Keep your eyes open, loves!

“My son, pay attention to what I say; turn your ear to my words. Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart; for they are life to those who find them and health to one’s whole body. Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.”–Proverbs 4:20-23 

“You know I’ll never let you fall apart if you keep your eyes open, my love.”  –NEEDTOBREATH/Keep Your Eyes Open

28 thoughts on “Mind Your Heart

  1. It’s not easy to deal with friendships ending. It can take many years to truly find needed closure and even the ability to bounce back and love well. Whew! May the Lord teach us just how to do so.

  2. I’ve read the Bible from cover to cover several times and I just recently came across the verse in I Corinthians which says ‘bad company corrupts good behavior’. What a profound statement! I reminded our girls when they went off to college, to always takes the time to ‘know’ people before assigning them a role, like best friend’ in their lives. It’s for their good as much as for them

    1. Yes, that’s for sure! It definitely goes both ways. Close connections with bad company doesn’t do us any good, but it does them no good either. Like God said to Jeremiah, “Let them turn to you, but don’t turn to them.” (Jeremiah 15:19)

      It doesn’t do anyone any good if a leaders character is ruined. It was the corrupt morals of Isreals leaders that destroyed Israel. (Hosea 4:6, Ezekiel 11)

  3. I love this! I know about losses and they hurt. I haven’t completely processed the losses of the past year. But I know God is growing me and it helps me to appreciate those close to me even more! Keep rockin it!

  4. Thank you for sharing this Tina. It is never easy to part with someone who we have been close to. It is true that keeping company that can influence us in a negative way is best not kept. There is a fine line in being a friend to them so they can see Christ in us but not allowing their ways and thinking to become a part of us.
    Blessings 😊💙

    1. Yes, there is a fine line. And some decisions aren’t easy to make and carry out. Blessings to you too. 😊 Thanks so much for all your encouragement! I So need it! ❤

  5. This is a really great and though-provoking post! I am truly sorry about the losses you have had to endure. That is never easy. In a way, I can relate to the friend who you have parted ways with. I had a loved one pull away. I asked if I had done something wrong, but the answer was no. Perhaps in this case, she was just going through some things of her own and didn’t have anything to do with me. I don’t know. But it can be painful to feel rejected. So I am trying to remind myself that those who are part of my “tribe” will stick around. And I need to prayerfully let the others go. Very good point that we have to choose who we associate with very carefully. We should be a witness to the ungodly. But we have to be careful not to get too close where they can affect us with their viewpoints. Thanks for sharing this wonderful post! 💜

    1. Yes, that’s very true. People often get distant when they are going through things. I seriously hate to reject anyone, even if they aren’t good for me, so I never come to this kind of decision lightly. In fact, I wrestle with it something fierce until I know for certain how I should proceed. I can definitely wrestle a log time!

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