She unfriended me.
We’d known each other for ten years. The two of us used to get together regularly with a mutual circle of friends, then after she moved away we stayed in touch over Facebook—as long-distance pals in the modern world do, of course. I liked all her photos. I commented on her jokes. I sent her family a hand-addressed Christmas card, for crying out loud—every year for a decade.
So when I went to tag her in a post one day, her name didn’t pop up. Huh. That’s strange. I searched for her in my friend list and—whaaa?—she wasn’t there.
Maybe she cancelled her account.
So I called her. “Hey, girl, did you unfriend me??” Hahahahaha. Joke, right?
“I don’t know,” she said. “Probably.”
The rest of that conversation is a blur since my brain was overrun with all the shock and hurt of discovering someone I considered a friend no longer considered me a friend, which makes us, well, not friends.
Has that ever happened to you?
Social media gives us a whole new array of options for dissing people, but in that moment of revelation (what?! you don’t want to be my friend anymore?!), I was instantly jerked back to middle school, where the halls buzzed with low-tech cliques and gossips. And I realized—rejection stings the same regardless of age or delivery.
Why doesn’t she like me?
Did I do something to offend her?
But she didn’t unfriend the other girls. What’s wrong with me?
Were we ever really friends in the first place?
What has she been doing with all my Christmas cards???
The trouble here isn’t a broken friendship. It’s a broken perspective. When a friend’s hurtful actions cause us to question ourselves more than we question the quote-unquote friend, we’re losing sight of some very basic truths.
Here’s a reminder.
People aren’t thinking about you. Believe it or not, that other mom at school who gave you the cold shoulder at the muffins event last week, she’s not pacing her kitchen right now plotting her next attack. She probably doesn’t even know how much she hurt you or got into your head. Why? Because people are inherently self-absorbed, and what we interpret as a slight might actually be complete ignorance. So stop giving those people so much of your mental and emotional energy. Spend it on the friends who know how awesome you are.
“For everyone looks out for their own interests, not those of Jesus Christ.” (Philippians 2:21).
God is thinking about you. And he would NEVER unfriend you. You know this, right? God’s opinion of you is the only one that truly matters. He will never leave you or forsake you. He calls you beautiful, holy, chosen and loved.
“What is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them? You have made them a little lower than the angels and crowned them with glory and honor.” (Psalm 8:4–5)
Friends are sinners, too. It’s unavoidable. When we love people, we will get hurt by those people. And? We’re bound to hurt them, too. It’s part of our fallen condition. But true friends will pick back up and love as Jesus loves—with compassion, forgiveness, and hope.
“A person's wisdom yields patience; it is to one's glory to overlook an offense.” (Proverbs 19:11).
So don’t allow your friends—or non-friends—to define who you are. Don’t empower selfish or clueless people (which is all of us, really) to shape your heart toward yourself or the world. Just fix your eyes on Jesus. Because if He had a Facebook account? I’m telling you what.
You wouldn’t just be his friend.
You’d be his profile pic.