Since last fall, I have had the privilege of discipling Lindsey, one of the most beautiful women I have ever met (I mean that as far as inward beauty, but she is also absolutely gorgeous on the outside). We meet almost every week, and I grow to love her more each time. She has a heart that truly wants to be Christ-centered in every thing she says, does, and thinks. She has challenged me much in the past few months.
Shamefully, I didn’t know Lindsey and her husband Drew had a blog until recently, so I popped over yesterday to visit it. As I was looking at the sidebar, I noticed one link that said “My mentor.” I clicked on it and found she had linked to me. I know I am technically Lindsey’s mentor, but I honestly never think of myself in those terms, so it caught me a bit off-guard. This may seem strange, but God used those two little words to point out another area of my sinfulness–my lack of being gospel-centered in my friendships.
Technically, Lindsey and I get together so I can point her to Christ in whatever way is needed, but even in that “official” setting, I keep finding myself simply sitting down to chat. Now, there is nothing wrong with chatting. In fact, it’s necessary to get to know others more intimately, but it can’t stop there. First Corinthians has much to say about spiritual gifts. At one point when Paul is on the subject, he says “When you assemble…..let all things be done for edification” (1 Cor. 14:26). Edification means building one another up, and since all things are to be done for the purpose of the gospel, I believe he means to build each other up in the gospel. I have to wonder what my goal is when I speak with Lindsey or any of my friends for any length of time and talk far more about myself than our mighty Savior who gives us all things.
I have a friend I call each morning at 6:30 to make sure she is out of bed (her request–I’m not some Nazi). Instead of our usual light chat one day, I shared with her some insights I had that morning while studying God’s word, and we had a beautiful 30 minute conversation. She took me even further in my understanding of God’s goodness, and I was so grateful I had not simply hung up the phone after saying “Good morning.”
This is making me have a different focus on my friendships. I am realizing I need to be more intentional about focusing all conversations on God, not waste my time talking so I feel like I had an outlet. Do any of you have ways that you specifically try to do this in your own relationships? I would love your help in growing in this area.