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Permission to Speak

A few of us have deep relationships that span decades— all the way back to the days of braces and sleepovers. Some of us have friends scattered across the country and we continue to make the effort to stay connected and involved in each other’s lives.

Permission to Speak

Maybe you and your neighbor walk together in the morning—your friendship developed because of proximity. More than a few of us have built relationships because of our kids. Thrown together at ballgames and play practices, we get to know each other because we end up spending a lot of time at the same events.

In recent years behavioral scientists have become interested in the ways friendship impacts a person’s life. The results of many complex and wide -ranging studies point to what you’ve known all along. Friends matter. Friends make life better. We need each other.

But we need more than people who we enjoy being around. We need more than people who share common backgrounds and mutual interests.

Each of us needs a truth-speaking friend.

Each of us needs someone who will tell us when we are wrong.

Each of us needs someone who cares enough to challenge our thinking and our behavior.

This kind of relationship must be built on a solid foundation of mutual respect and integrity. You should not give many people this kind of access, but you should give someone permission to tackle issues that make you uncomfortable.

Choose this friend wisely. You must be confident that this person loves you and has your best interest in mind. You must be know that this friend has already spent time on her knees talking to God about the message she brings to you. You want your truth-speaking friend to be filled with grace and led by the Spirit of God.

If you don’t have this kind of friend in your life you are missing opportunities to learn and grow. If you don’t have this kind of friend in your life it may be because you haven’t made yourself vulnerable. Most people, even loving friends, won’t go deeper until you let them know you are receptive to the truth.

Begin your search with prayer. Ask God to develop you into the kind of person who welcomes loving correction and insight. Ask God to give you the friend he can use in your life. Proceed cautiously and give the relationship time to grow. Perhaps you already have that truth-speaking friend walking beside you…perhaps it’s time to give them permission to speak.

Permission to Speak

This post may be shared with some or all of these wonderful link parties: The Art of Homemaking Mondays, Darling Downs Diaries, A Life in Balance, Cornerstone Confessions, 3 GLOL, A Little R & R, Tuesdays with a TwistCreate With Joy, Happy and Blessed Home, Faith Along the Way, Messy Marriage, Mom’s the Word, Saving 4 Six, Creative K Kids, & The Princess and Her Cowboys

You might be interested in these posts, too!

Laurel Griffith

Laurel Griffith

Laurel writes from Albany, Georgia where she lives with Jim, the love of her life and husband of 32 years.She and Jim are the parents of 3 grown sons and a lovely daughter-in-law. Laurel has been a magazine publisher, a newspaper editor and a freelance writer. She speaks at conferences, teaches Bible study and makes a great sugar cookie. You can read more of Laurel’s thoughts at www.laureljoycegriffith.com
Laurel Griffith

5 Responses to Permission to Speak

  1. Terri Presser May 22, 2015 at 4:49 pm #

    What a great post and what great advice, thank you for sharing this at Good Morning Mondays. Blessings

  2. Beth May 20, 2015 at 1:42 pm #

    I love this, Laurel! I think it’s so true. I have several key “truth-speaking” friends that I regularly invite to hold me accountable. Over the years I’ve discovered how valuable accountability and vulnerability are to making me a better person, friend, wife and mother. Thanks to Candy for sharing your post at Wedded Wednesday (Messy Marriage). These are the kinds of posts I love being linked up over there. Anything that benefits the person spiritually, relationally, emotionally, physically, or even financially is part of what Wedded Wed hopes to offer in the linkups. Thanks so much!

  3. Kim Adams Morgan May 20, 2015 at 10:12 am #

    This is so true. These people are so valuable to have in our life. I think when we are younger, we want people to tell us what we want to hear, but as we get older we see the wisdom in having other people around we can trust to give godly advice and counsel. I pray for this for my daughter. God has answered this prayer for my husband and I a few times as we have moved into new cities. We are forever grateful. Stopping in from Messy Marriage.

  4. Helene May 20, 2015 at 9:41 am #

    I appreciate those truth-telling friends in my life! They have so often been the voice of the Spirit.

  5. stephanie May 18, 2015 at 12:27 pm #

    oh i LOVE this!
    i’m so grateful to have a few people in my life who love me enough to be honest with me – they are always straight forward but rarely mean, because it’s not about things i’ve done “wrong” or things that are “bad” about me, they just love me SO MUCH (what a gift!!) that they cannot sit back and watch me act out of sin or brokenness, you know? this is spot on.

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