Alright ladies, lets discuss a subject that we've all talked about since elementary school: GUYS.
We love 'em and can't live without 'em, but let's talk about who we should invite in and who we should leave at the door...
Here's a little background to know about me... I have not been able to have healthy guy friendships ever. I have always used guys to determine my value in this world. I would constantly be making new guy friends and always meeting new ones. But none of them stuck or would stay around. Not because I was crazy, but because I was insecure. I would look to them to tell me that I was pretty, to tell me that I was smart, and worthy of his attention. I could go on, but the bottom line is that I was having an imperfect human being have authority in how I viewed myself: not through the eyes of our creator but through man's eye.
Throughout high school and part of college, I desired God centered friendships with guys, but it would never happen. I would always lose them or they would leave because the expectations I had on them was too much to fulfill. I wanted to be like the "cool girls" and have a group of guy friends that they always hung out with. I wanted that close guy friend that I was inseparable with. But that never happened with me.
I always settled with guys who would treat me wrongly and I think a lot of girls nowadays don't actually know how a man is supposed to treat women. So I am going to elaborate on what I have learned over the past 6 months and how much freedom/healing has come because of His redemption.
Guys should not:
1. Ask a girl to send any type of nude picture.
If he asks for a naked picture of you then he cares more about his own pleasure and selfish desires, rather than your intimacy with your future husband. He also is saying you are not valuable enough to be pursued correctly rather just being played with and used.
2. Text you flirtatious things if he doesn't have intentions of pursuing you.
A lot of times guys are just as insecure as girls are and they want to feel like they are desired. They will text you not on your time or when you want to talk but when they want to feel wanted. Don't allow them to use you as a comfort tool. Don't be that girl to give it to them- you deserve more than that! Ephesians 5:6, "Let no one deceive you with empty words."
3. Drag you down in your relationship with God.
The bible says in Philippians 4:3, "Yes, I ask you also, true companion, help these women, who have labored side by side with me in the gospel together with Clement and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life" and in 1 Thessalonians 5:12-13, "We ask you, brothers, to respect those who labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you,and to esteem them very highly in love because of their work. Be at peace among yourselves." So let's break this down...
Paul said to help women. Women were doing ministry with Paul this whole time. Then a few letters later, Paul encourages his fellow brothers to respect and affirm those who labor among them. So if women are laboring along side with them- that is who they are called to respect affirm in the ministry they are doing.
Girls, don't settle for just any guy- even as a friend. Your male friend should see certain qualities in you that the Lord has given you and encourage you with that. The Lord loves friendships, but He wants your community to encourage one another closer to Him and not away from Him.
1. Encourage you closer to Christ.
They should respect your emotional and physical boundaries. They shouldn't let their decisions toward you be based in emotions. Honor yourself enough to have those standards for how he treats you because you are worth it. This will also help teach you how to be friends with your future husband's friends one day. Having healthy boundaries is essential.
2. Give you a new perspective on life.
As "preparing" to be a wife one day, your guy friends should give you an idea how guys are wired and what they're like. They will have an entirely different view point than your gal pal which could be incredibly beneficiary. They should champion you in all things - never condemn or make you feel bad.
3. Bring unity to the body of Christ.
Of course, a friendship is a two-way street and this involves both you and him. In any friendship that wants God as the center, it is crucial is to pray together. This looks different for everyone and setting boundaries will take place but when people pray together - there is so much less room for the enemy to come in between them. By having different perspectives and gifting's, you and him are able to work together to further God's kingdom. This will honor God and His church.
In all of this- I am not shaming men by any means. I have discovered what it's like to have close guy friendships and to see the fruit that comes of it. There are amazing men of God out there and I believe that they will help you ladies out there grow in wild ways if you allow God to lead. Women also need to be self-controlleded and not let emotions run their decisions.
If you have struggle with something related to this here are a few questions to ask God:
In what ways am I allowing Guys to be my security?
What fulfillment am I trying to have my guy friends fill that you should be filling?
How can I better my relationships with guy friends?
What ways in my friendships with guys can we both grow?