How To Deal With a Friend Who Became Distant
Written by Nazka Leosala
April 18, 2022
Being a Christian does not guarantee that life will be easier. Before I became one, I used to have a plain life. If I try to map the ups and downs during that time, it would be like looking at a single strand of noodle: wavy with the highs and lows not far from one another. When I accepted Jesus as my Savior, my life transformed into a series of mountains and valleys; the highs soared higher and the lows plummeted lower. It was indeed a new life, and it was one which I am sure I can handle. You can handle yours, too!
Joshua 1:9 tells us, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” Moreover, Deuteronomy 31:6 says, “Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.”
we are certain that God is always there when we’re facing hard times.
From this, we are certain that God is always there when we’re facing hard times. However, the enemy has its way of penetrating our defenses. There will be times when we will doubt—or worse, forget—these promises of God. As a result, we try to regain control of our lives, failing to remember that the Father should be the one steering the wheel. And before we know it, a distance between us and God has been created.
Some of us may have already experienced this kind of situation ourselves. The good thing is, being aware is the first step in climbing out of this misery. But, what if it’s not us? What if one of our friends is suffering from this circumstance? What if that friend has started to withdraw from us and from God? What should we do? Here are some tips on how to handle a friend who has become distant.
By communicating with them, we help them carry some parts of their burden.
First, we must keep our communication lines open. As their friend, we should be there, ready to listen as they talk their hearts out about what went wrong. It’s like making ourselves the anchor when they are trying to sail away from God. By communicating with them, we help them carry some parts of their burden. And upon doing so, we are also obeying the law of Christ. Galatians 6:2 states, “Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” But then, if they don’t want to talk, what now?
If our friend has shut us out, the best we can do is to not pester them with questions. Instead, we can check up on them every once in a while, especially if they have decided to ignore our messages on social media. Through this, we show that we still care, that we are not giving up on them, and that they have a place to come back to once they are ready.
And finally, we should pray for them as we wait for them to come back. According to 1 John 5:14, “And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us.” There’s nothing more powerful than a sincere prayer. Also, the emotions and decisions of our friend are not in our hands; they are in God’s. Ultimately, it will be God’s work and not ours if our friend has finally decided to return to Him. All we need to do is pray, have faith, and be patient.
Our lives as followers of Christs are not all rainbows and butterflies. There will be hardships and challenges, all of which we can overcome through the help of Jesus. As revealed in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”
In the case where one of us falls behind, where one succumbs to weakness and is having trouble relying on the grace of Jesus, we must extend our hands to them and through it channel His love. We will assist them as they get back up so that soon, they can walk with us once more.