Recently I was talking to a friend about one of her friendships, while we were talking I kept thinking about an email that I got a while ago. It was one of those forwarded emails but I've kept it because it was one of the rare forwards that was worth keeping. I have attached it below so you can read it. But basically it talks about how we have different types of friends over the course of our lives. Some people are our friends for a reason, some are in our lives for a season, and others are with us for a lifetime.
Now I believe all of us strive to have those lifetime friendships, and I think some of us (myself included) try to shape all of our friends into lifetime friends. We think, "He/She will be my friend forever!" but the truth is not all of our friends are meant to be in our lives forever. As I look back on my own life, I see some of the examples of friends that I've had for a reason or a season. The email has a clear distinction between a "reason" friend and a "season" friend, however personally I think the two kind of mush together a little bit. In the email the "reason" friends are in our lives to meet a specific need, like helping you through a hard time, providing guidance and support, and then disappearing. Whereas it says the "season" friends teach you something, they bring joy as well as help you learn, and grow.
Like I said, I think the two are almost one in the same. I don't believe that a true friend should ever be in your life just to meet a need; I believe friendship is more than that. Friendship isn't one-sided, it isn't one person strictly serving a purpose for another person. That would be called using someone and it's not a characteristic that I would associate with friendship. Sure serving a purpose in someone's life comes along with being a friend but I believe we affect our friends just as much as they effect us. All of our friends are in our lives for a reason. They help us through the hard times, give guidance and teach us something but some of them are only in our lives for a season. After that season, some may disappear completely and others may just become distant friends, they are still friends but you are not as close as you used to be. We need to learn to accept this fact and not fight against it.
As for lifetime friends, these are the friends that we will always be tight with. They are the friends that teach us lifetime lessons. The ones that we count on to say the right thing, and they usually do - whether it's what we want to hear or not. They are the honest ones, you don't ever have to worry about stepping on their toes because they are just as honest with you as you are with them. They challenge you and make you question your choices. They may be hard on your sometimes but it's only because they love you. They are the friends that will stand by you through thick and thin, and help you bury a body if you need to...lol jk ;)
I am very blessed to have several friends that I consider to be lifetime friends. Some of these people I have known for years and years, others I've known a short amount of time. However it doesn't matter when I met my "lifetime" friends I feel like I have known them my whole life, they are very close to my heart, and they are there to stay. They are my friends that I don't need to talk to, or see, all the time but yet when we do talk, or spend time together, we pick up right where we left off as if no time has passed at all. These friends help me grow in ways that effect my life, not just bits and pieces of my life but my whole life. They each have had a great impact on who I am and I am very grateful for them.
So as for my blog post title, it's true, some friendships aren't forever but each one makes you who you are. Each person in our lives is there to teach us something. Some teach us to love, some teach us to trust, some are there to open our eyes and recognize those who aren't our friends - even if you thought they were. Some make us realize that we aren't the type of friend that we thought we were. Be grateful for those that are in your life and remember that they may not be there forever, but your friends will be there for as long as you need them to be there.
Click on the image for easier reading :)