The wonder of friendship and the occassional “butt-kicking” that goes with the territory

Butt-kicking I don't even know where to begin this post…so I'll just jump in and see where it heads.  Over the last two days, I've been the recipient of some good ole fashioned butt-kickings…from two people that I love in my life.  Now, let me get this out of the way – I needed it.  I was heading down some old destructive "mental/spiritual" roads that were bound to net me nothing but emotinal grief.  Worse still – the path I was flirting with was going to mock the work God has been doing throughout my life.  So dummy me – I opened my mouth and shared what I was going through with two people who love me…so the butt kicking?  It was deserved!  And, by the way, I thank the Lord that I have people in my life that love me, that take a very serious stake in what I am and what I do, and that are courageous enough to "let 'er rip" when I am in desperate need.  Many of you know that I am a big Seth Godin fan…I get his daily emails and have read most of his writings…today's email underscored the need for all of us to have friends who are around in our lives who can roll up the pant legs occassionally and deliver one point blank to our behinds when we need it.

Real world friends are hard to find and hard to change by Seth Godin

But virtual friends?
If your online friends aren't egging you on…
If your online friends don't spread the word about the work you're doing…
If your online friends aren't respectfully challenging your deeply held beliefs…
If your online friends don't demand the best from you…Then perhaps you need new online friends.

Contextually, you might have a point of contention because the post is not simply about friends in our lives…but in a changing world where people who are close to us do not necessarily have proximity to us at all times, having friends who know us well and can do what Seth says are priceless gifts.  I know I need them in my life…and since my "behind" is still a bit sore from a few things that were said to me (in righteous love) by people who are demanding the best from me and challenging me on not only some of my beliefs but some of the "mis-beliefs" I have especially about my own life, they become more priceless as the moments pass.  I've said it for years – "accountability sucks"…on the one hand, we need to believe it is a good thing to have in life, because it is…accountability keeps us honest with ourselves…it provides the objectivity we need to get our heads and hearts in the place that has the potential of being the most God-honoring.  Every time accountability has raised its head in my life, in hindsight, I've been ultimately blessed.  On the other hand, when it comes at us (even in love) it is tough to handle and actually can lead us to wonder why we invited it in the first place.  That's the truth – accountability is a double-edged sword…but without a doubt, we couldn't be growing to be the people God intends us to be without it. 

Question – are you open enough with people in your life that they actually can see into your soul?  If so, then you know the truth of what I'm posting today…if not, yeah, you might be able to sit in a chair for a few hours without having a painful reminder of some issues in your life, but let me tell you, you are missing out!  Maybe you do need some new friends (virtual or otherwise)…hey, if you want to borrow a couple of mine…you know, the ones with the big feet who are not afraid to use them for some timely accoutability kicks, I might be willing to lend you mine!  Of course, I wouldn't do that unless I warned you ahead of time of the potential danger of allowing them into your life.  Yet, here's some truth – you might be needing a good ole fashioned butt-kicking even now.

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