This is an open letter to my friends, the ones who have seen me, the real me, not just the strong, put together version of me. And, despite, my brokenness and flaws, they still choose me, day in and day out. Because, what I’ve realized, more than I ever have in any season of my life, is how important it is to be known.
I know a lot of people and a lot of people know me, but to be known is an entirely different concept.
To be known. To hand over the key to your friends and let them read everything to where there are no hidden pieces of you that is trying to tuck away in the corner of your room.
There is a fear that once someone sees the real us, they won’t accept who we are. So, sometimes, we only offer a piece of ourselves to people (which, I think is perfectly okay for we aren’t meant to be known by everyone we meet); but, we can’t offer only pieces/fragments of ourselves to people all our lives, because most likely, we only offer the fragments that are beautiful and admired. And, then, one day, we will become so weary from trying to be perfect that we have a hard time understanding the true definition of love. Someday, somewhere along the way, you will find people who will want all of you. The messy, crazy, artsy, chaotic, calm, highs and lows person that you are. We are human. We aren’t perfect. True friends know that.
A true friend pushes you to be the best version of yourself and isn’t afraid to call out the things that you try so hard to hide. We hide for fear that once you do expose it, you’ll be thought less of. But, that, my dearest friend, is a lie.
The perfect example of what friendship looks like here on earth is the example that Jesus is to each of us. When we expose all the broken, ugly pieces, he doesn’t say, “Yeah, sorry. I don’t choose you anymore.” No, instead, Jesus looks at us, in all of our mess, and says, “I still choose you. You are my beloved. And, because I love you, I’m not going to let you stay where you are.”
To the here and now, to the friends that are pushing me to be better, who speak the truth in love over my life, and who care for me in a way that says, “Hey. I’m not going anywhere. When you fall, when you mess up, I will still be here,” I can’t be more thankful for.
In this season, I am overwhelmed by the gift of such raw, vulnerable, authentic friendships that make my heart leap with happiness. Honestly, as of late, my heart feels in a way that I can’t quite put into words. I’m not living my life to try to be accepted by everyone. I’m living my life for me, not in a selfish sense, but in a self care sense, that has finally decided to be all of me without reservation or fear as to what the other might think.
This known friendship grants a certain kind of freedom, a freedom to be who we are and choose one another daily, just as Christ gives us that daily choice- to love Him and be loved in return. I don’t know what I did to deserve it (I certainly don’t deserve the friends that God has blessed me with), but somehow God knew. God knew that I needed them just as much as I hope that perhaps, they need me, too.