On my recent visit to my hometown in Gulf Shores, Alabama, I reconnected with my friends. My friendships are valuable to me and moving away doesn’t have to mean you stop being friends; it means you have to figure out how to keep the connections alive.
Distance can separate friends and love ones physically, but not emotionally or spiritually. True friends don’t allow a move to sever their bond. Long distance friends are the first ones I call to help me rejoice over a new home, a marriage, the birth of a grandchild, a career change, or anything that is significant. Real friends that make an effort to remain close are considered treasures. They make milestones in our lives a happier time. They sharpen our senses, challenge our mentality, and support us emotionally. They don’t dismiss the friendship in hard times, struggles, sickness, and loss either. They weep with us, show love and offer comfort. They help carry our burdens. What we lack in face-to-face contact with a distant friend can be made up of conversations by facetime, or phone. There is always e-mail or texting. Better yet, A surprise card in the mail.
- Here are five steps to strengthen a long-distance friendship.
- Encourage one another and build each other up. We remember friends that cheer us on.
- Be quick to listen and slow to speak. Everyone loves a good listener.
- Pray for one another. You can’t forget the ones you pray over.
- Don’t let pride come between friends. Does it matter who contacted the other one first?
- Love intentionally. Friendships taken for granted won’t last.
It’s never too late to start the friendship ball rolling. If you have a great friend who lives in another town, keep them close to your heart. It’s not that hard to get a friendship fix. Jump in your car and plan a weekend get-a-way, make time for a visit, or pick up the phone and bring a smile to someone’s day—Your smile might be broader than theirs.
What long distant friendships are essential to you and why? List a few qualities you look for in a true friend?