Hi again! I am so happy you’re back! 🙂
This week I took to Instagram (@nadiakmora) to ask for your questions on friendship. Today, I am answering my faves! Thank you all for your support, it means the world to me 😀
@shalomfuquene: How can you share the Word of God to your friends? Which are the best type of friendships, and do they have to be of your spiritual level?
Nadia Kay: The best way to share the Word of God with your friends is to live it. 🙂 Sometimes as I read the Bible, God gives me a specific Word for someone. As soon as I’m done reading, I’ll text the scripture to them so that the Word can begin to work in that person. However, when trying to share the Word with our unbelieving friends isn’t always that easy. The best thing you can do is be the Word of God for them, through your words, attitudes, intentions and lifestyle. I think the best friendships are those that bring growth. Growth comes when we learn, but it also comes when we give. I open my heart to people who are mature in the faith, who have a good foundation in the Word and who are willing to invest in me. I also open my heart to other people, but with a different mindset. I open my heart to give of my faith, to share what I have learned from the Word, and to give of the love Jesus has poured into my heart. I believe in order to have successful friendships, we need a special discernment that only comes from being intimate friends of the Holy Spirit. This can sound very vague and even spooky, but in essence, it’s investing time in my relationship with Him, like I do with all the others. Purpose yourself to invest the 30 minutes you spend on Twitter, in telling God about your day, expressing your dreams and ambitions, singing Him a song or dancing for Him. Just being in His presence grows the trust and makes the friendship flourish.
@nathaliewaggon: If you have a friend from church, how do you really know if the friendship is one that edifies? What principles can you establish in your life to have healthy friendships?
Nadia Kay: Friendships that edify are friendships that result in some type of growth. I can describe my personality to you by comparing myself to a happy dolphin. 😉 They say dolphins are one of the most social animals, they are always in large groups (usually of 100 members!) and form strong bonds with each other motivating them to keep each other safe when danger appears. If I could, I’d be surrounded by hundreds of friends; I love to meet new people and discover their stories and dreams. But as I began to meet so many people, I realized I quickly gave them my heart, without them asking for it. The problem with this is that when I needed their help or support, they weren’t there. This taught me that my relationship with God ought to be the most important in my life. Only He could fulfill me the way I needed. This sparked a prayer in my heart, “Lord, remove from my path any friendship that will not edify. I ask that every friendship I have would fulfill a specific purpose.” I hope it doesn’t come off too mean or rough, but it’s what I prayed and it’s what worked! I believe Jesus is so close that we don’t really have time to not be edifying one another or leading lives without purpose. It became a determination in my heart to be intentional in my friendships; if a friend didn’t pray, I was going to teach her…if a friend only spoke negative things, I was going to teach him to speak the positive…if gossip was previously allowed in a certain friendship, because I was now involved, we would only pray for people, not talk about them. I did not do this offensively or in a judgmental way, I asked the Holy Spirit to help me be the friend He needed me to be. Having healthy friendships is a decision and determination of the heart, because being different isn’t always easy, but it is always worth it! Here are some of the principles I established in my friendships:
- God is always #1! This is not something you do in a day, it’s about investing time every day and making sure He continues to be my first priority day after day.
- I was a little more strict regarding my guy friends, for example, after a certain hour, there would be no more texting. Girl, if you did not say it before 11 pm, it can wait until tomorrow. 😉
- Continuously evaluate my conversations. Is the majority of our talk gossip? cursing? bad news? My friends and I really put in the effort to always talk about what God is doing in each of our lives, share our dreams and goals, explore creative ideas together. All of this creates an atmosphere where God feels comfortable enough to dwell. “For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst” (Matthew 18:20).
- This probably applies to every area in my life, but I purposed a long time ago to tell my mom everything. I do this with an open heart ready for her to advise me, help me pray or teach me how to respond in different situations. Maybe for you, it’s not your mom but your bible-study leader, your older sibling, your pastor, an older friend…regardless, it is very important to have a person in your life to whom you can stay accountable and learn from.
@sarabeou: Do you think a Christian can have a close friendship with someone who does not know God? What do you think is the best way to preach to your friends who are unbelievers and are resistant to going to church? Who is your best friend?
Nadia Kay: Imagine you have a beautiful fruit basket sitting on your counter with bananas, watermelon, honeydew and some bright red apples. One of the apples however, is spoiled, you ignore it and head to bed, excited to devour the fruit in the morning. When you wake up and reach for the banana, you realize nothing has happened to the rest of the apples. They continue to be this way for many days to come, until one day you wake up craving a big, juicy red apple and to your astonishment, they are all bruised! The rotten apple did not affect the rest immediately, it was patient and took its time bruising each one. I’m not saying this always happens, but there are times that as Christians we walk into intimate friendships with unbelievers with the best intentions. We are determined to pray for them, to be light and have the goal for them to encounter God. Many times, what I’ve seen happen, is we let our guard down and little by little accept their sin. It’s only one R rated movie…it’s just one beer…just one nasty song…and times goes one and we end up being influenced by them. I believe with all my heart that we need to love them like Jesus did, but when it comes to an intimate friendship, I’ve learned the sole purpose of that is for me to give. Last summer, I worked in the restaurant of a hotel near Miami, and of all my co-workers, there was only one committed believer. God poured into my heart a genuine compassion for them and I strove to be God’s tangible love for them. I laughed with them, chatted with them, shared about my life, accepted them with zero judgement, listened to them for hours, yet I managed to not open my heart. I did not confide in them, did not seek their advice or go looking for their love. We became close because I opened my heart to give, but had it clear I was not to receive from them or be influenced by them. As I shared with Shalom, the best way to preach is to be. Working at the restaurant, I realized that for many, I would be the only Bible they would ever read. This took me to seek muuuuch more of God and learn to listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit before answering. My advice is to fill yourself with the Word; memorize it so you always have it when you need it. It is also important to understand that God is the only One who can change lives, and it is through prayer that we move His hand. My purpose in the restaurant was for them to understand that they needed a change. I knew their lives were sinful, but that’s all they knew so that made it okay. So, my goal was not to judge them and tell them they were living wrong, I was to show them there was something better. How? Through the overflowing joy in my heart and the way I lived my life they were to desire the change. Many people’s curiosity was sparked as they began to ask me questions about a God they had felt so far away for so long. It was so cool to see their spirits be awakened, even in the smallest way, like reciting the lyrics to an old hymn they had learned in grade school. Praise God! 😀 I think my mom is probably the person who has sown in me the most, she is my best friend and the most undeserved gift I’ve received from God! ❤
@santirowi: What does the Bible really say about friendship?
Nadia Kay: I think I can summarize this whole blog post in these scriptures:
- Galatians 6:7 “for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap.” If I sow love, joy, patience, help and mercy, that’s what I will receive!
- Proverbs 15:1 “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” Friendships are opportunities to to remove wrath, heal wounds, get rid of sadness and edify the heart of our friends through our words.
- John 15:12-14 “This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends. You are My friends if you do what I command you.” To be the friend Jesus was means to put ourselves in second place and love wholeheartedly and selflessly. It means you eat tacos when you wanted a burger, it means you go to the movies when you preferred the beach, it means praying for others when your life feels like is falling apart. This command of loving like Jesus did could possibly be the simplest, yet hardest thing to do all at the same time. This is why it is so important to establish a friendship with Him, only He can teach us how to love like we should.
We were called to love, hug, motivate, dream and stay with our arms wide open waiting for those who feel lonely and without direction.
Thank you for you questions, I am so happy to be sharing life with you through this platform 🙂 Now go, and love like Jesus did, I know you’ve got it in you!
Nadia Kay ❤
Photography: Manuel Mendoza https://www.instagram.com/mmpg12/