About the Author

Karina Allen is devoted to helping women live out their unique calling and building authentic community through practical application of Scripture in an approachable, winsome manner.

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  1. I am also in a season of paying attention to relationships. I’ve had a tendency to stay in my bubble and focus on the work in front of my face, but God is teaching me that I need people in my life. As you’ve said, sometimes we just have to take the initiative and put a date on the calendar, show up with support and interest in their life, or lean into connections through our local church. It’s sure not always easy, and many times I feel as if I don’t have time for it, but (as Elisabeth Elliot has said) there is always time to do the will of God.

    • Yes Michelle! I love Elisabeth Elliot! That is so good!

      I am believing that God will grow your desire for community and bless you with extra grace and capacity to grow authentic friendships!

  2. Karina,
    I’ve lived in the same place for 22 years. I still can’t believe that because up until that time, I was picking up and moving every 2-4 years. I was the one leaving friends behind and having to make new friends in a new community. Now, I’m the one being left behind. One of my very closest friends retired and moved away and it left a big hole in my heart. But, God. God in His goodness has let me mourn and is now bringing some possible new friends into my life. But what about when they learn of all my junk? That used to be a huge obstacle for me, but the older I get, the more I realize that we all have colossal junk that needs to be shared and ultimately accepted. Isn’t that part of what friendship is all about? God has opened the door, but now it’s up to me to make the effort. Effort can be tiring, but it is so worth the reward. God has never led me astray, so I am going to follow His merciful leading. Beautiful post Karina, and so glad God has broadened your circle of caring friends.
    Blessings,
    Bev xx
    ps. So thankful for my friends here at (in)courage!!

    • Bev, we are so thankful for you!

      I am believing that you will walk boldly through those open doors with joy and expectation. Praying each new friendship is filled with His love an grace.

      The Lord is always speaking. May you hear Him clearly in the way you should go!

  3. Karina so glad to hear of your new friendships. God has brought new people into my life definitely but They are either younger or older and live in other parts of the world. Friends I’ve met in the peacebuilding world and my fellow colleagues who have finished or are finishing their masters or phds and then move away. Can I ask for prayers to find some fellow believer friends who are similar to me with kids or things in common that God might bring into my life. Don’t get me wrong I do have friends here but another or a Christian friend would be nice! Thank you

    • Thanks Jas!

      Father, bring authentic friends into Jas’s life. You designed her for community and godly family. Plant her in healthy spaces. Open her heart to those people and prepare their hearts to connect with her in real and lasting ways.
      In Jesus’ Name
      Amen

    • Jas,

      Continued prayers for you sweet sister!!

      Father God,

      You’ve designed us for community. We long for that so much. Guide Jas’s path to places where she will meet people & make friends. Open her eyes & heart to new ideas & places to go & find new friends. Asking for authentic connection with 1-2 good friends who are in similar situations like Jas.
      AMEN

      Blessings 🙂

  4. Karina this is so well spoken and true. God friendships, while still requiring consistency and commitment, always feel easier, natural and God-breathed. I know exactly what you mean when you say He inserts people into our lives. Friends that it feels like we’ve known forever. That’s when we know someone is a sweet package straight from Heaven. I also relate to you about family and would love to connect. You are loved!

    • Hailley, you are so kind! Thank you so much!

      God friendships are the absolute BEST!!!! The Lord is so sweet to us in this gift of friendship!!!

      I would love to connect!

  5. Karina, I’m having difficulty building friendships. My best friend of over ten years moved away over six years ago and I’m left by myself. I’ve tried to build friendships with other women I know, but it doesn’t seem to work. I am an introvert and it takes a lot for me to meet new people. I’ve been yearning for friendships, especially since I am a mom now. I’m in my thirties and it seems the older I get the harder it is to meet people. Can you please pray God send Christian friends my way and for me to know it? Thank you!

    • Shanice, thank you for sharing! It is hard, but totally possible!

      Jesus, You are kind and gracious to us. Your heart is for us to be in community and to have authentic connection with others. I pray You would make a way where there seems to be no way. I pray You shower Shanice in an extra measure of grace and capacity and effort in her making new friends. Give her hope and expectation in this journey.
      In Jesus’ Name
      Amen

  6. Karina,
    Your words were a blessing to read this morning thank-you.

    I hope that you all have a blessed day…..
    Penny

  7. I live with anxiety and depression. It has been difficult to maintain friendships over the years. I have one friend who has never left. I’m able to be there for her when she needs me because I know she genuinely loves me. I will pull myself out of bed for her.

    • I love that!

      “If one person falls, the other person can reach out to help. But those who are alone when they fall have no one to help them.” Eccl. 4:10

    • Depression ocd I have both I’m 56 my children have gone with no caring for an older mom.they have told me they are ashamed of me.due to my ocd. I do have a church i go to bible studies. I have 3 little dogs and i love to stitch. I just can’t understand why they would treat me so awful?please keep in your prayers. Depression is tough!!!!!!!! Stay strong in christ ❤️

      • Lord I pray for Maria, and I thank you that your love for her is so faithful and constant, that you will never leave her side, and you ENJOY her company! I ask that you would refresh her today and heal her in the deepest of places so she can know that because of Jesus, she is whole, healed, and set free! Not because of anything she’s done or not done, but because of the beautiful grace offered to her. You have redeemed her and called her by name and she’s yours, and when she walks through the fire and rain and storm, You are her shelter, and she is precious and honored in your sight and you love her.
        Thank you, Kind Father!!! In Jesus’ name, amen!

  8. Grafted in. Feeling a little teary just reading that. I’m so grateful for God’s faithfulness to you in this area of your life and the ways you encourage and equip all of us to keep pursuing community. Love you, friend. xx

  9. What a delight to read how God brought these new friends into your life, Karina, and very quickly made you old friends! Not long ago a new acquaintance and I met for breakfast one morning. FOUR hours later, after absolutely delightful conversation, we left as friends. Such connections ARE precious gifts from our Heavenly Father to be savored and nurtured. A heart-warming post, Karina!

  10. Thank you for sharing this! I also struggle with not having close immediate family ties and really value the meaning of friendship and the people God has placed in my life. Quality time is also my top love language so I can definitely relate to being the one to initiate times with friends. Sometimes I get discouraged that I am usually the one to initiate and have to fight through the battle in my mind that it’s not worth it or it’s too much or people don’t care or people will get tired of being my friend. In the end, I know God has called me to be intentional with people and satan would love for me to push back.
    You are right about it taking work and effort. I find that time is a huge obstacle and other people don’t necessarily have the same priority on friendships. I try to focus on doing my best to cultivate the friendships that He has placed in my life and be okay with the process. This was such an encouragement.

  11. Karina,

    I’ve been praying & continue to pray for you sweet sister!! God made us for community to be around & with others. Having authentic friends takes effort & time. We have to work at it One thing I do often is send texts or emails letting friends know I care about them. Making sure they don’t forget me. One group of friends I have is about to become one less-due to a move closer to grandchildren. It took some effort on my part but we will have our final good bye next Tuesday (17th). It will be sad because we all worked together about 2 or so years. It will be a special night with pictures taken & tears flowing. Ralph Waldo Emerson said: “The only way to have a friend is to be one.” We must be willing to take a leap of faith & step out of our comfort zone. For me this meant getting a little more involved in church. Volunteering for activities & attending more often. I also volunteer with Relay for Life (Cancer society). I have met some wonderful people that way also. One easy step to take that doesn’t require a lot of time is attending a Bible study at church. You have a small group of women. Over the course of time you really get to know them. What ever it takes just try something & watch God work!

    Blessings 🙂

  12. Thanks Beth!

    My transition looks more like possibly leaving my church of almost 20 years. My new friends are at a possible new church. Getting connected isn’t hard for me. This season is more about connecting with new people and seeing if they are my people.