Filling the Love Cup
The perfect imperfection is simply by being human. Sometimes people place standards on us that exceeds what we can ever achieve---and that's okay. When you expect perfection from anyone, you're going to end up disappointed, which is why I believe forgiveness is so important----forgiveness not only for someone who has hurt you, but forgiveness for yourself. If God can meet us where we're at---then don't you think He'll accept us, while we're dusting ourselves off, doing the best we can? He wants us to do the same for others though. He wants us to be Christ-like, even if we are imperfect, yet perfect in His eyes.
There are going to be times when your cup is full and when your cup is empty. When your cup is full, you're able to give more freely, love more freely, accept more freely. But when your cup is empty from giving so much of yourself, it's time to turn around and go rest. Even Jesus became overwhelmed and had to leave his disciples so He could rest. They took every ounce in His cup until it was empty, and Jesus had to rest and recharge. If this happened to Jesus---don't you think the same would happen to us, even on a larger scale?
This is why boundaries are so important. If you have a special friendship with someone, both sides needs to be nurtured. When one takes more than the other can handle, that friend may walk away like Jesus did to refill their cup. It doesn't mean the friendship has ended, but there was nothing else left to give. A friendship should be a two-way street. If you find yourself overwhelmed by the plethora of issues and life problems your friend is pummeled with, you might be left with your energy sucked right out of you. If your friend never says, "Hey, how are you?" That's a sign that you may need to take a better look at that relationship. You're not a therapist or a pastor. You always want to help when help is needed---but you have to also look out for your own energy. How much are you providing? How much is your friend providing? Is it a give and take? Or is it just a 'me me me' fest with a whole lotta taking?
Guard your energy the best you can. I truly believe there is a psychological phenomenon where people actually enjoy being miserable. It gives them a false sense of purpose to God knows what. I can't imagine staying in a state of negativity---whether it be anger, jealousy, depressiveness or fear. When I get down, or whenever I'm full of anxiety, I don't just stay there. I pray until God lifts me out of that pit. If I do get help from a friend, I take what is needed---I don't bring them down with me. This is important. Because once you start bringing down your friends, you're going to see them find escape routes. It doesn't mean they don't love you or feel bad for your situation, but life is full of ups and downs and we all need to find balance, especially with our relationships in life. If your conversations are all about their life and not yours---turn the other way, because they have no interest other than to get free therapy. A friendship is like a plant, it needs water. When you don't supply enough water to it---the plant will die. Are you watering your plants? Or, are you harvesting anything you can get without feeding them?
Even if you've been friends with someone for a long time, people can grow apart or no longer put equal effort and care into the relationship. If you can't count on them, or feel like you're doing all the work to maintain the friendship, it's okay to go with your gut and cut it off. It's okay to let go of what no longer serves you, if that's the final decision you have to make. Otherwise, I'd like to find solutions and communicate the issue, instead of throwing it all away. When all else fails, then yes, time to walk away.
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