This month full of questions should have come with a warning label, don’t you think? ⚠️ Working with all of these catalytic friendship prompts is a lot like being handed a can of Coke and not knowing whether or not it’s been shaken. It’s a bit of a risk.
But you were undaunted. You made it to the end!
#CultivateCourageous: Questions That Grow Good Friendships Great is wrapping up today. I feel like I packed you a picnic to enjoy with your people, and now I’m lighting you a candle and waving nervously as I back away, hoping you enjoy every morsel. That you’ll come back for more. But I have one more question for you.
Where do you want to go and are your current tools serving to get you there?
I wrote these questions for you because I want to shake you awake. Gently but sincerely, like a double espresso.
If you came to get tooled up with new ways to understand your people better with words that are not already trite and dead, I hope you found some. But I pray that you also find yourself sanded into a new shape, because every question is double-sided. This is the key to the questions.
To make a good friendship great, YOU must be supple enough in your ways to let every question be a mirror question, one that reflects back on you.
That goes for your marriage and your family ties, too. You’ll recall that mirror questions are the kind we ask ourselves first, holding a willingness to be with what we find. You never know when a question will boomerang back.
Good questions prove to the listener that the asker is settled in, cross-legged and expectant. Picture being with someone who’s asking you a question but not listening to your answer, because they are formulating their response and you may as well be an upholstered chair in the room. Now picture the opposite of that; being with someone who is so receptive after she’s asked you a question, that she has turned her whole posture in wait.
Good questions peel back interest, and interest is an amazing compliment. It elicits honesty, too, so just be ready to give some honest back. If you can receive that, then, Hallelujah. You just grew.
For a long time my heart asked at the start of a friendship, Is this one a keeper? Am I doing this right? I was not trusting myself. Everything has changed for me now that I know I am a safe place. That’s all I have to give, and the treasure of Christ in me through the identity he designed, this haven. When I live receptive, like a harbor, ships do come in to port. Some come just to refuel, and others put down anchor.
We are not alone. Look around.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us….Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed.
I’m seeing the crowds now when I read verse 1. I’m hearing their sighs.
I’m no theologian but it’s not hard to see the author of Hebrews is addressing a community who are weary. Not just one diehard fan. I believe friendship is the formula for fastening our fractured souls together for a once in a lifetime trip. You may think you’re traveling light, but who is holding your drooping hands?
All of my favorite friendships were good long before they were great.
I said this from day one. What I meant is that for every person I love and live my life loving, there was a starting place when we were just people who were thrown together. And that is what we all are until we decide to invest – we find a reason to. If we keep finding reasons, we start asking questions.
Did you miss a question or two in the series? Bummer.
Haha, just kidding. Just head over to the main topic page for #CultivateCourageous.