I believe one of the greatest gifts that God has given us is the ability to have relationships – of all kind. Social, business, emotional, spiritual, psychological, work…you name it, its just great. As a child however, I faced a grave problem. For some reason I just couldn’t make and keep friends. *Sigh* You know from my childhood into adolescence, there were other kids who I said were my friends but now that I do have real friends, I realized they were truly not my friends at all.
For example, I recognized that some of these friends loved people with money. So in order to be in their group I began to steal my grandmother’s pension. (Thank God for Jesus who saved my wretched soul). They did not know where I was getting the money I must say, but the point is when I ran out they left. A mean, they just left me all alone. So of course the most natural and logical thing I did was to steal more in order to be in the group. When all that stopped (cause my mom found out and thoroughly thrashed my behind properly), I was without yet again. At times, my friend would set up other classmates against me because I was out of money. So there would be periods when the entire class maliced me because the class bully (who was my “friend”) told them not to speak to me.
As I got older I realized that my maturity of speech in relation to my actual age brought a different type of problem which also made me friendless. People felt I was pompous and pugnacious and so I was yet again friend deficient. I was too young to be an adult and too old to be a teenager. It was quite stressful and depressing. When I did find a friend they liked me only for my bold outspokenness in order to speak on their behalf (which would get me in trouble then they would leave me) or for my brain to do their school work (which when I refused to be used, they would leave me also).
To make matters worst, I went to a prejudiced all girls high school. Black skin (chocolate black) was not acceptable socially so it was just my whole educational abilities that landed me there. I was discriminated, mocked and ridiculed more by the neighbouring boy school than the students themselves in my school, but it was still horrible socially attending that school. In the class system, I was at the bottom because I was not rich and of course my complexion. It felt awful. Upon leaving I received a scholarship and when I arrived at my new location hoping for a fresh start nothing much changed along the friendship line. I just wanted someone who could be a true friend and loved me for me – all my flaws, all my insecurities, everything! Just like me for me. *Sigh* I had a “relationship-ish” with Jesus but I didn’t know Him as a friend. I attended church and was integrally involved, a passionate Christian but I truly did not know God.
When I returned home from studying, the Lord sent me to a young lady in our church to ask her help in completing a project He had asked me to do. I was most annoyed because I did not like her. She liked my boyfriend at the time and that was not going down well with me at all. I totally rejected and loathed the idea of working with her. I begged the Lord to send me to somebody else…anybody else. I told Him how much I despised her for wanting my guy, but He instructed and said nothing further. After many tears, with a heavy, irritated, heart, I obeyed, went to her and told her what God said. She was quite willing and warm which severely aggravated me because I wanted her to just say one thing wrong so I could just tell her off. I even rehearsed the things I would say to her but man, she did not at all say anything bad. We spoke neutrally and then began working together.
You know, every time I tell this story, it puts a smile on my face. That young lady became the first true friend I ever had. We still are friends today and this was 12 years ago. We are like sisters. She nurtured me to a foothold in God and now I am doing the same for her. I do not have a sister but our friendship taught me what it would be like to have one. I do thank God she is in my life. Together Christine and I completed the project and won young people for Jesus. *Awesome* Shortly after, the guy (my so-called boyfriend which she liked – she admitted it), left the church when she and I became engulfed in God and we never heard from him again. So much for that!
My friend, do not reject anyone because of your own feelings, thoughts, facts or even actual true knowledge of them. A person’s thorns may be just what you need to unveil your own rose that is hidden inside of you.