Sometimes the only way to truly love someone is to walk away. I’m tired of reading articles and opinions that suggest letting go shows you never really cared. At times, being around enables folks and allows them to continue bad behaviors, lies, and double mindedness. But when you walk away, if they truly cared about the relationship, they will begin to question why you had to walk away. This can lead to change as long as you are able to express yourself and share why you need to leave the relationship.
Too often we are afraid to let folks go because the relationship becomes codependent and becomes an idol for us. We go to others before we go to God. We seek out their opinions and talk to them about things while God sits back and waits for us. When this happens, it is time to reconsider our relationship with others and take time to reflect on why we aren’t going to God first.
For many, we find that we are putting best friends, spouses, and loved ones before God. Clearly you can’t just walk away from a spouse or loved one. However, you can readjust your priorities. For the purposes of this post, I want to focus on friendships. Specially toxic ones that are leading to covered up behavior, codependency, and putting God second.
Take a moment to reflect on your relationships. Has a specific relationship popped into your mind? Keep it there while reading the rest of this post and reflecting upon the questions.
There are many times we will find ourselves questioning friendship. Adults, young adults, teens… we all struggle in some way with ensuring we have folks around us who we love to be with and can enjoy time with, who bring out the best in us. But sometimes we question, “Why is this person in my life?” If you find yourself asking that question, it may be time to let someone go.
To determine if a relationship should be continued, think about why you are in one another’s lives.
- Is there a God-given purpose?
- Do you bring out the best in one another or is one of you doing all the work while the other is just there when the other reaches out?
- Are you there for one another when it matters?
- Do you take time to pour into the relationship and strengthen it?
If you answered no, or realized that you are doing all the leg work to keep the relationship going, and there is not a reason you are in the person’s life, then it may be time to walk away. By remaining in the friendship, you will continue to spend time and energy on that relationship while neglecting others that may be the ones you need in this season of your life.
No one wants to just up and leave a friendship. It isn’t easy to tell someone they aren’t needed or wanted in your life any longer, but sometimes it must be done. And sometimes the walking away need not include a discussion so much as a turning around and giving the other person space. In some friendships you need to walk away from, the sad truth is that the other person won’t even know you aren’t around anymore. Some people are too absorbed in themselves to realize someone has stopped coming around. This is where they are at and is no reflection on you. For the others, giving them a call to say you need to take time away will suffice. They may question you, and if they do, be honest and just share your heart. It won’t be easy, but it will be worth it.
Many times, when you end a friendship, the other person reflects on why people don’t remain in their life and they begin soul searching and discover the very things about themselves that caused you to leave the friendship. This may lead to a chance to reconnect in the future. Other times it will remain closed but you will feel a peace about the closure.
Ending friendships is never easy, but you will find that as you remove time from the relationships that aren’t part of the Lord’s will and aren’t helping you grow, you will have additional time to focus on your relationship with God, your relationship with others, and your own growth.
Until next time,