Friends come and friends go, but a true friend sticks by you like family.
~ Proverbs 18:24 The Message
How do we develop trust in relationships? Well, for sure it is NOT being perfect. In fact, it might just be the opposite of perfection. It probably isn’t grand gestures or heroic acts - because, come on, how often is that even necessary?
But it might include: paying attention.
A while back I had an extremely stressful event happen. And my friend noticed. How do I know this? Because if her response. She was paying attention. In her attentiveness, she did a few things that were so supportive, helpful and encouraging - at a time when she herself was certainly busier than a one-armed paper hanger.
Over the course of a number of months, a number of people in our community lost people they loved. So when we gathered the week after Thanksgiving for one of our regular meetings, we took time to ask each of those people about their holiday in light of their loss. Afterwards, one of the mourners came up and said to me, “I cannot believe that you remembered.”
Due to my advancing age, I need to be honest, I am grateful I remembered too!! Paying attention to what is important helps us remember. A gracious community that takes into account memory loss certainly helps on the days when we forget.
Are you paying attention to what really matters? There are so many benefits, including a propensity to feel less self-pity, loneliness and depression. When we pay attention, we realize that we are not alone, in fact, we are usually in the company of others who are going through the exact same thing we are!