Because I don’t know anyone who doesn’t want friends.
But I know lots of women who worry about being unfriended. Or misunderstood. Or hurt or judged or left out or taken for granted by their friends. I’m one of them.
So they stop trying. They stop risking. They stop starting over. Because they’ve stopped believing there’ll be a seat saved for them at the table. At the book club. At the PTA meeting, the Bible Study, the office break room, the retreat, the lunch date, the church pew, or the living room sofa of the woman who used to be their best friend.
That’s what our first ever Bible Study for (in)courage is about.
For years you’ve all told us how much you love the stories we share here of everyday faith. So we’ve dug deeper into the stories of friendship shared on the blog to bring you, Never Unfriended. And then you told us you’d like to be able to unpack those lessons deeper through a study guide. So we’re delighted to let you know that there is a Bible Study designed to offer a deeper dive into the message of Never Unfriended.
Introducing the first Bible Study from (in)courage — We Saved You a Seat: Finding and Keeping Lasting Friendships.
Because we know that change comes through letting Scripture soak into our bones.
We Saved You a Seat is about not giving up on friendship. Even when we’re frustrated by it. Even when we’re tired of it, confused by it, or disappointed in it.
This Bible Study is a chance to change that.
This is a practical guide to finding and keeping lasting friendships.
This is believing that there really is a seat saved for you at the table. And it’s also about becoming the kind of women who will always save a seat for the women around them.
Because, the ultimate friend, Jesus — the one who moved into the neighborhood and pulled up a chair to get to know us, the friend of the popular and unpopular, of priests and pastors, of the uneducated and the graduated, of elementary school girls and their minivan driving moms — put it pretty plain and simple. When asked what the greatest commandment was, He said,
Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and most important command. The second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets depend on these two commands. (Matthew 22:36-40, emphasis mine)
And when pressed to define who exactly this neighbor is that we’re commanded to love, He didn’t give an inch. He gave a story. And it defines neighbor not as a particular “who,” but instead as a “what” — as in what you should do. The parable of the Good Samaritan isn’t about identifying your neighbor; it’s about being a neighbor. In essence, it’s about being the kind of friend you wish you had.
While we might have defined friendship our whole lives by what others do to us, in the end it’s what we do for others that will define us as friends or not. That’s how we get friendship to stick. And that’s what this study is about.
Together we will unpack what that kind of friendship takes — seven practical ways to take Jesus up on His invitation to love other people. To be friends who go first, who make the first move, and sometimes the hundredth move of starting over. This is the meat and potatoes of life — figuring out how to get along with the people we love as well as the ones who rub us the wrong way. This is the whole shebang. Explored in seven simple steps.
Let’s do this together.
FREE GIFT: We’d love to invite you to start here. With the first week from our Bible Study — a gift to our (in)courage community.
Just click here to sign up to receive the first week of the study, including the first video discussion: Friendship Takes Showing Up.