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  • Writer's pictureJen Henry

The Gift Of Friendship

Updated: Mar 31, 2023

Hello my friends, I hope you are well and thriving not just surviving. But if you do feel like you are in a place of just surviving, I encourage you to keep going and to not lose hope. It is just for a season! Keep smiling through your trials, although it is not always easy. Know the Lord and His Holy Spirit are right by your side. Just open yourself up to Him, through prayer and praise.


Challenging times in our lives are just for a season, and the Sun/Son will shine on you and cause you to bloom and sprout if you continue to nourish the soil of your heart. If you spread Gods nourishment on and around you, as we do when we fertilize flowers and plants, you will bloom and grow toward the Sun/Son. Just keep reaching upward :) It says in his word in Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. (You can invite Him to help you and give you direction by quoting and believing His word.) We can claim Psalm 38:21-22 and many more scriptures daily. I just found this wonderful scripture this morning as I read my devotional in The God Of Your Story by Brian Hardin. This is perfect timing, as usual :)

Do not abandon me, O Lord. Do not stand at a distance, my God. Psalm 38:21-22


Today I am inspired to write on the gift of friendship. It has been a busy week, and have been bittin' at the bit, to write this post. I don't know if you are like me, but I have experienced times in my life where I ponder the topic of friendship. It is easy to sometimes feel alone or possibly feel misunderstood. These feelings can be a bit of a downer and sad at times, but I have come to realize as I've become more seasoned ;-) we are never alone, even when we sometimes question if we are.


When I moved to the San Diego area just over 3 years ago, I really did not know many people. I spent most of my time with my husband and his family. Mike and I used this time to grow together and navigate through being newly married. As time went by, he introduced me to a wonderful friend of his, named Karen and we hit it off fabulously, as he knew we would. He was so sweet to share with me his longtime friend, he had known since High School. He had a great feeling about us meeting, and he was right. Karen as a friend was an answer to prayer, to say the least. Then the Covid Cloud hit 5 months later, and we were all in the same boat. I don't need to go into that subject too heavily, because we all went through it together. It was a challenging time for us all, but we made it through. In those two years, my husband and I lost 3 close family members during Covid, but not of Covid. It was a crazy time to say the least. Maybe down the road I will write more on that subject, as for now I am going focus in on the gift of friendship :) All I can say is thank God for phones and Zoom to connect with our family members and friends.


I have come to realize that friends come in all shapes and sizes, and from all walks of life. They could be an old school mate, a neighbor, a family member, a coworker, or a mentor. Whoever it may be, thank God for friends! Some you might call your besties, others you may call for advice and are a lifesaver, others you may have something in common with, some make you laugh, some are great listeners, some are less or more accepting than others, but most are in your life for one reason or another. Some friends are right around the corner or in your near future, some have been around forever, and some are new to your life. Maybe you are in preparation for meeting them; regardless, I know you are like me, and you are so thankful for the gift of friendship.

If you are in a position of feeling as if you don't really have these type of people in your life, I am going to give you something to think about. I wrote this several years ago as I was thinking on this subject, and I posted it on social media in October 2017 right before I met my husband Mike in December of 2017. Kind of an interesting coinki dink, don't you think!? I am going to share what I wrote with you today, my new Blog friends.


Note to self:

If I were another human being...

Would I want to be married to me?

Would I want to date me?

Would I want to be my friend?

Would I want me as a boss?

Would I want me as an employee?

Would I want me as a: mother, father, brother, sister, spouse, parent, teacher, caregiver, patient, animal owner, neighbor, co-worker, friend, grandparent, or child etc.....


If you can honestly take a good hard look at yourself and say NO to any of these questions, it's a great place to start, to becoming a better YOU and a better ME. (end of post)


Asking ourselves these questions could be the beginning of preparing us to be a good friend to someone else or a good spouse for that matter. If we all worked on being less self- absorbed, and more open and giving, we will be in preparation mode to have healthy relationships. Can you imagine what a greater world this would be! 💖


Sometimes we are waiting for friends to go out of their way for us, but maybe they might need you to call them for a pick-me-up, or make their day. Maybe they are going through more than they lead on. Maybe they are just trying to make it through another day, but they just don't want to bother you. Pride can be one of those ugly rearing emotions that keep us from connecting with people as well. Maybe you had a falling out, or maybe you got your feelings hurt, maybe someone just doesn't seem like they are quite up to your ideal standards?! I believe we need to look inside first, and see what type of a friend we are?! Lets stop for a moment and think about that question again...What kind of friend are we?! Asking yourself these questions can be a humbling experience. Could we be acting too judgy or being too rigid or unaccepting? Do we not put ourselves out much, but expect others to?! Or, are we just fearful of putting ourselves out there and being too transparent and vulnerable?! Whatever it is, we need one another! God created us to worship Him but to also have relationships. Our Lord God is representative of these characteristics to help us to understand how to be a good friend to others. God is LOVE, and in 1 Corinthians it describes the characteristics of love.


4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres 8 Love never fails. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8


I would like to take a moment to call out the section in the scripture where it says: Love does not envy. That phrase is a big bite to swallow! Are there times we can't get past something someone has been given, that we don't have, or are not as good at?! Are we focusing in on what we don't have, instead of what we do have? Well, I am here to remind us that we all have our own unique gifts and talents. Our own unique amazing character traits both externally and internally. Shouldn't we rejoice in the fact that we are made different, and shouldn't we be part of one another's cheerleading squad, supporting and uplifting one another, keeping in mind we are all one of a kind?! God did not make a mistake when He created you. He created you just as He wanted you! We all have a purpose, and if we want to live in His fullness, we need to do our part in developing the amazing person God made us. Just keeping The 10 Commandments in mind, can help us to be a better friend.


The Ten Commandments

Exodus 20:1-17

And God spoke all these words:

2 “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.

3 “You shall have no other gods before me. 4 “You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. 5 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, 6 but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments. 7 “You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name. 8 “Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. 9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns. 11 For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy. 12 “Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you. 13 “You shall not murder. 14 “You shall not commit adultery. 15 “You shall not steal. 16 “You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor. 17 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.”


The 10th Commandment is about coveting. Isn't it a reminder to us to be happy with what we have been given, and not to be focused in on what others have, whether it be physical or material?!


We have all at times felt alone or questioned our friendships, but if we just take a moment to really ponder the subject of friendship, and the people who have been put in our lives. We might get a clearer perspective.

I would like to take a moment to honor the cherished people in my life whether they be family members or true-blue friends I have had for years. I want to thank you for loving me through the tough times and the fun times. I want to thank those, who have been my cheerleaders in life. I have called you that in person, so you will know who you are. I want to thank my friends for hanging in there, even when I might have rocked your world a bit. I want to thank you for giving me your precious time, love, patience, understanding, and forgiveness. I want to thank some new friends in my life, who recently came up to me when I was sitting alone at a seminar I was attending in March of 2023, and asked me to join them. You even shared your lunch with me! Now that is a sign, of quality new friends :) I adore you Ingrid and Stefanie ;-) Our meeting was such a God thing! It was one of the first times I had ever gone to an event like that on my own, and look at the gift of friendship I received. I want to thank my new friends Candice, Wally, and Rita for putting yourself out in such a giving way from the event as well. You would not be in my life had I not gotten out of my house, and accepting an invitation from my amazing Soul-Sister-Friend Melia. The Rock event a few weeks prior, lead to the next event, where I met you ladies. One uncomfortable step lead to the next victory. I also might not have pulled the trigger on volunteering at Reins, the Horse Therapy Ranch, had it not been for God bringing my new adored giddy-up-friend Chris, who wanted to join with me.


I want to give a shout out to my cherished Mom who has been by my side through thick and thin, who is irreplaceable and was hand picked by God to raise me. I might not have survived, had anyone else tried to volunteer for that job!





For my husband who has opened his heart to love, and decided to take the plunge so unselfishly, who has encouraged me to enjoy life and develop who God has made me. I want to thank my grown children, Jordan and Chase, who have now turned into best friends. Thank you for your love joy, and understanding! I want to say thank you to my neighbor friends Richard the social butterfly, thank you for taking me under your wing. For Judy, Mary, Pam, Dave, Diane and more...


My heart melts when I think of my treasured friends who have been there for me through thick and thin. They are not in any particular order, and I am so sorry if I have forgotten anyone. I might be adding to this post down the road if my memory fails me at this moment, Yikes! Here I go. I would like to throw big hugs and adoration to my amazing friends Shel of Sheljen 2, Misty, Monica, Yen-ne-fer (who I can't thank enough) Jose, Marieshka my first bestie in LA, Lisa Marie (who you don't meet, you experience) Ang the brain, Dr. Mary, Kristy, Lisa, Danae-ege, Kathy, Amy B, Curtie, Georgia and friends, Lyllioune Sista, Anthony, Melia, Chris, Karen, Deborah, and more life group friends including their hubbies, my sister Chris, my sister-in-laws Sissy and Dianna, Deb in AZ, Eric & Colleen the life savors, Samie, Betty Girl, Ann W, Vanetta & Curtis my singing friends, Julieann, Colten, Chelsea, friends of my husband, who have now taken me in as their friend; Tim, Cherri, and Tom. My nephews and nieces who have always come through for me, Norissa, Ann, and their family members, my cousins I am getting to know better, since I moved into their neck of the woods, my Grow My Know and social network friends, all the amazing friends that were so good to us and also took such great care of my sister at Methodist Hospital in her last days, and all of my friends who I have not mentioned today, but I care for, and have been a blessing to me. Some friends, I don't talk to regularly, but when we do, we just pick right up where we left off :) I am so appreciative of all the people that the good Lord has brought into my life, and I have developed a growing relationship with. I am forever appreciative and thankful for you all. My life would not be the same without you in it! This is not about quantity, it is about quality, and you are quality! I only hope and pray I can bring as much joy to you, as you do to me!


I decided to try and name all of the people who are still on this earth who have been extremely instrumental in my life. There are those like my dad, sister Jodi, Kurt, Audrey, Donna, and my grandparents who I am forever thankful for! And last and most definitely tops on my list, would be my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who is my best friend, and my eternal daddy. I love you as deeply as my heart could ever possibly love and I am forever grateful to you.


I hope this post has inspired you to take time out to ponder the gift of friendship and encourage you to tell those in your life how much you love them and care for them. Continue to Pray for them, prayer works; be the team leader of their cheerleading squad. Everyone could use a pat on the back and a punch in the arm. Give it a try, it can be contagious.


As an added note, if you choose to spend more of your valuable time on this site, I would like to invite you to click on the black "BLOG" tile on the Home Page to see past posts; as only a few posts are shown on the page. I have added additional information in the "BONUS" and "Food For Thought" sections as well, located at the top of the Welcome Section. If you add your email to the "SUBSCRIBE" section at the end of the post, you will get notified via email of any new posts I publish. Thank you for spending some of your valuable time with me. I welcome any comments and would love to hear how you are doing on your journey of growth. I would also love to celebrate you and your accomplishments. Every step in the right direction makes a big difference. You can do it!


Until next time, big hugs to all, and know I am keeping you in my prayers.


Warmest regards,

Jen

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Jen Henry
Jen Henry
May 27, 2023

I so appreciate you all so much! Jen

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Guest
Apr 01, 2023

Girl, your blogs just keep getting better and better. I thank God for our friendship and am excited to see how we transition into two little old ladies! 😂

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Unknown member
Apr 01, 2023
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Your kindness means the world to me, friend!

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mysticalbrixey
Mar 31, 2023

Love you too Jeni. Thanks for being such a loving God fearing sister in Christ. And for listening to the Hoy Spirit whom is guiding your spiritual growth. Keep it up girl! You are and inspiration.

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Unknown member
Apr 01, 2023
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So appreciative of you!!! Thanks friend


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