Monday, January 4, 2016

Be The Change

After a month of holidays and weekends-away, I'm finally settling back into my apartment and my isolationist lifestyle (though I know it will be short-lived since the IU students will be back in town soon). Consequently, I found myself with time to think while cooking dinner tonight. One of my friends recently moved to Idaho to start college at BYU-I, and asked me if there is anything I wished I'd known before getting to BYU. I reflected on all my experiences and the things I learned in my 3 years in Provo, from academic, professional, spiritual, and personal standpoints. One revelation that hit me during this exercise fell into the "personal" category, and that is this:
I have discovered that the best friendships come from trying to be a good friend, rather than find one. 
I have seen this verified on more than one occasion, and am certainly seeing it in my life right now. The people whom I've come to trust the most are the people that I have chosen to invest in, the ones to whom I listen when they're excited or struggling, the ones for whom I pray, the ones with whom I try to be the most Christlike version of myself. And I can see, in each instance, that these individuals have reciprocated by giving to me a piece of their own soul, choosing to care for and listen to me as well. 
Now, I will be the first to tell you that I don't know much about love. And I feel like I know only a bit more about friendship. But in my little sheltered, somewhat naive experience, this is a significant revelation. All relationships are give-and-take, but learning to give more than you take is a gift that will bless every relationship, and build a bond of mutual respect, concern and love deeper than anything else I've experienced.