I feel like I am an open book. Probably too much. I mean honestly I am not the most blunt person around but I am open about what I’m going through. What the struggle is in my life. What I am most excited about.
Whether that could be the pain of dealing with a job that I don’t feel completely satisfied with or the things that my son can build with his Legos all by himself.
I share it.
But I realize that there are a ton of people who don’t open themselves up to others. This could be because of shame or it could be because of laziness.
Either way, in my opinion, it is a terrible way to live.
And there’s a better way.
I threw my wife a surprise birthday party a couple years ago and I was discussing it with some people I knew and they were shocked that I had to cut down my list because it was getting a little too big to handle.
They asked me how many did I picture coming to the surprise party who knew both me and my wife decently and I said that I was trying to limit it to about 30 people. They were shocked because they said that they only knew like 2 other couples close enough to share this experience with.
This saddens me. Not because I feel that you need numbers to celebrate something. But because they are limiting their impact into the lives of others and limiting the impact of others in their life. I’m sure that they are very close with those 2 couples but what if those 2 couples aren’t available? What if those other 4 people are out of town on vacation? Does their life just get put on hold till their friends are back? No. They’ll just have no one to battle life with during those times.
I have heard that sociologists say that as we get older, we get less friends and that’s fine but what about all those people who can be those on-the-surface types of friends. Yes, these are not the ones you will do battle with. But you need them just the same. Because some of these friends/acquaintances/associates/co-workers/fellow students will be the greatest friends you will ever have if you just pour a little more time into the relationship.
All I am saying is that I think if you do not limit those who can see through and into your life, you will be the better for it. Your life will be enriched in direct proportion to the openness you allow yourself to be. So here are some reasons I think you should be more open (on top of the above blabber):
1) It will provide safety.
When you are alone, you are the most vulnerable and having others around you will help you be safe and give you great protection through any trial that you face.
2) It will lead you to be a person of greater depth.
You can only get down into the depths of your soul if you allow someone else in to help point out the flaws. And if you believe there are no flaws, be prepared for a rude awakening. This will be someone who can ask you the deep questions so that you can gain a better hold of your identity and therefore become the best person you can be.
3) It will bring freedom and liberty for you to be yourself.
Without knowing who you are deep down, you can’t be who you are all around. So others can help you do more of the things you are made to do and focus on the relationships that you should focus on. This will open you to stop doing certain things so that you can do the essential things more.
4) It will become necessary.
The Bible says that just as “iron sharpens iron, so one man must sharpen another.” This is why you need people who will not disappear and can stand by you through all of your life. I love taking on things with friends better than alone and I think it is because I’m consoled through it and can be encouraged throughout that time.
I hope you find people that you can be close to. Whether it is one or 50. Just find someone whom you can be you around because we need you. The world needs you so let’s open our lives and let other see through it. And if you don’t have anyone, I’m right here.
If nothing else, at least make a bunch more friends so your parties are more kick-ass.