The steps you need to meet Christian friends and to finally experience lasting friendships. Christian friendships are worth the effort.
There are a few friendship stories in the bible that stand out:
- Mary and Martha
- Ruth and Naomi
- David and Jonathan
One of the best illustrations of friendships is when Jonathan realizes his father Saul is out to kill David, and Jonathan protects David.
1 Samuel 18:1 Now it came about when he had finished speaking to Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as himself.
The imagery of one soul knit to another’s in friendship is something we all long for.
But how do we find it?
In this article, we’ll discuss how to meet Christian friends by:
- How to be the friend you want to have
- Prepare to do the work
- Be reliable and consistent
- Be open with others
- Asses where you are hanging out
- Keep it upbeat
- As Always: Pray
How to Meet Christian friends that last
be the friend you want to have
Often the advice given on how to find friends is to be the friend you wish to have.
Do you wish someone would call and invite you to coffee? Take a deep breath and text or call an acquaintance and ask them for coffee.
Would you like to have a walking partner or someone to go to the gym with you?
Do you wish you had a friend who would text you occasionally and ask how your day was going or send you encouraging words?
Start doing this for a handful of new people you’ve recently met. Don’t have their number? Send them a DM.
Reach out to old friends. If you’re unsure what to say after a long time of not speaking, send them some old photos for a laugh or surprise them by remembering their birthday or wishing them Happy Mother’s Day.
Prepared to do the work
After years of motherhood, then waking up into the social media age, it appears many of us have forgotten how to make friends.
If you’re on the hunt to make lasting Christian friendships, be prepared to do the majority of the pursuing.
Christian friends are worth it.
You might have to be the one who is consistently suggesting coffee or playdates.
Accept that some people aren’t initiators.
You’ve made a specific decision to meet Christian friends. While other women are most likely happy to have more women Christian friends, their priorities may not be the same.
Their lack of initiation doesn’t mean they won’t also cherish your new friendship. It just means you might need to do some of the upfront work.
Be Reliable and Consistent
You’ll need to be consistent and reliable in your new friendships.
As Shasta Nelson explains in her Ted Talk, one of the three requirements for every healthy friendship is consistency.
I’ve been in new small groups where a couple of the members attended the group sporadically, didn’t follow up on requests, and rarely responded to group chats.
In the end, these members either fell off the group or were left feeling like outsiders.
The other group members were working very hard to stay connected. While it may look as though it came easily to them, they were making a concentrated effort to reply to each group chat, and making sure nothing got into the way of attending the next group meeting.
The effort you put into your new friendships will be the reward you receive on the other end.
Be open with others
The greatest gift of Christian friendships is the deep conversations and sense of community they provide.
But just as you won’t be able to fill your soul watching a TV show, you won’t experience the life-saving grace from Christian friendships if you aren’t vulnerable and share your life struggles within these safe friendships.
Your friendship needs to be an equal amount of giving and sharing. Let your Christian friends carry your burdens, speak the word of God’s truth into your life, and you do the same for them. Being in this vulnerable space is where real friendships blossom.
Asses Where You Are Hanging Out
I’ve learned to be intentional with where I find my Christian friends. As hard as it may be, going alone to church events can be an enjoyable experience that opens you up to incredible opportunities.
Attending a church retreat where you know ahead of time you’ll have the opportunity to break into small groups can be a fruitful experience.
On the other hand, attending a huge conference with no small group time, although fantastic for your soul, won’t usually do much to help you meet Christian friends.
As scary as it may sound to intentionally put yourself in situations where there will be small groups of strangers sharing about themselves, this is how you develop friendships.
Joining a bible study is the perfect way to meet Christian friends.
You already have a topic to discuss, and you already know everyone will be meeting at a regular time consistently.
Be willing to join more than one study group if the first couple doesn’t work out. It also helps if you can join a study group where you choose the same age group or similar stage of life as the women in your group.
Keep It Upbeat
Friendships are where you share your good times and bad times.
We yearn for deep personal connections because we want to have friends that’ll carry us through those difficult times.
But bringing all your negativity from the get-go will not attract many friends.
As we talked about above, think about the friend you want to have. And be that friend. Encourage your new friend and learn to laugh.
As your friendship blossoms, you can bring your problems and issues. But red flashing bells will go off if you begin bringing questions, challenges, and complaints to your new friendships again and again.
The truth is, negativity is easy to find — a scroll through any social media feed.
What we’re all looking for is positive people to feed into our lives.
Pray your way
We often leave prayer as a last resort. But it should be our first action.
Ask Him to lead you where to meet Christian friends and which friendships to pursue, as well as which ones you should let rest.