Welcome to Tuesday People Tips #3! Today there’s a little bonus at the end of the post so don’t miss it!
Each Tuesday I’ve been sharing my tips for fostering relationships with Your People. This week, I’m filing these tips under the “golden rules” of loving Your People.
We talked a bit last week about using technology as a tool to help your friendship when time is tight. And yes, a timely text or email is great for those hectic times. But we have to actually make space for the People in our lives too. It’s been said that a person’s priorities can easily be seen on their calendar and in their checkbook. And yes, where we spend our money speaks about what we consider important, but where we spend our most precious commodity–our time–is where we truly show our values. So we need to make space to spend time with each other whenever possible. For you that might be once a month, or once a week. There’s no rule with this stuff. Do what feels right for you and Your People. Just carve out some space to enjoy with them.
Know Your Place
While we all want Our People to make space for us, it’s important that we know our place in each other’s life. The seasons of our lives will drive this. If you have a friend who is a busy mom with 5 kids, she’s not going to be as available to meet up one-on-one with you perhaps as often as your single friend. Don’t take that personally. If you are truly each other’s People, you’ll recognize that this is a season where her focus has to be on the kiddos, and relationships with friends will probably work better through technology rather than daily hang-outs. Also, understand that even if you were once the #1 go-to for one of Your People, as life progresses that may not always be the case. Years ago my friend Jeff and I would have picked up the phone and called each other first to share fun news or get advice about something important. But now that we are both married, we know obviously that “first place” belongs to our spouse. We would never look at that as a negative thing, we just know our place in each other’s life, and it’s a little further down the totem pole than it was years ago. Friends, we must know (and be fine with) our place in Our People’s lives. This gets rid of any weirdness in relationships, and shows that you respect Your People and Their People in all circumstances.
Lastly, there will be times in Your People’s lives that are hard. Life takes us all on some long, winding, bumpy roads. We want to show up for our friends when it’s time to celebrate the great milestones of life, but we cannot avoid also walking along with them in the not-so-happy times. Perhaps one of Your People is traveling a dark and twisty road right now. You don’t know how to help. You can’t really change the circumstances or do anything to make it all better. Heck, you don’t even know what to say or if you should mention what he or she is even going through. Friend, that doesn’t matter much. Just don’t avoid her. Please don’t pretend like he isn’t hurting. I know it’s awkward, I know it makes you uncomfortable to talk about. We all get that. But I promise you that if Your People are going through hard stuff, they already feel kind of lonely. Don’t avoid their situation just to keep up your level of comfort. Show up, dive in with them, and just make sure they know that you are there to talk/pray/be with them if needed.
Speaking of going through tough times with Our People, here’s a resource that might help Your beloved Person if they’re finding themselves in a rough place right now. Today is Book Release Day for Rachel Wojo’s book, One More Step! WOOHOO!
I hardly know Rachel. We’ve met exactly one time, briefly. But it was one of those encounters that I know God orchestrated in my life, even though it seemed purely coincidental at the time.
I was in an airport on my way home from a writer’s conference. A woman stopped me, seeing my She Speaks bag, and mentioned that she’d just come from there. We had just apparently spent the same 4 days in another state, walking the halls of the same exact hotel, going in and out of the same conference rooms, and we hadn’t crossed paths once. Strange.
I wasn’t even supposed to be on a plane that weekend, but there I was, back in my hometown, now meeting this woman at the baggage claim. We chatted for a few moments, then she happened to mention she had one advance copy of her book left, and asked if I would like it. Of course! How fun to get to read someone’s words before they go out into the world for everyone to see.
Little did I know God would use that book to speak through Rachel and right into my life, where things had recently been dark, difficult, and just way too much for me.
The full title of Rachel’s book is: One More Step: Finding Strength When You Feel Like Giving Up.
So in a strange way, I guess Rachel is My People too. A person that God plopped right into my life to speak in a way that I needed so badly. Perhaps you or one of Your People needs to hear the hope that’s in this book. Great news! You can now get it!! Today, One More Step was released into the universe. Check out this link to learn more about the book and to order!
Also, if you are local to the Columbus, Ohio area, you’re in for a real treat! Rachel’s Book Release Party is happening tonight at Lifeway Christian Store at Georgesville Square from 7-8pm!
Happy Tuesday! Go love Your People well.