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Having the Courage to Make New Friends

By Sarah Geringer

God's Brave Women - Sarah's Story

It takes courage to make new friends as an adult.

But real friends are essential, no matter what stage of life we are in. They are worth the risk. Here’s a story of how I had to be brave to make a new friend as an adult.

Last summer, I reached out through email to someone I've known for a while at a distance. I have admired her from afar, and hurriedly sent the Ask message before I lost my nerve. She replied within a few hours, with a big Yes. I was thrilled but nervous, just like in junior high, which was 25+ years ago. If you get jitters just by reading this far, I understand you.

We have a lot in common – we are women of faith, bookworms, poetry fans, and lovers of art and everything beautiful. Lots of potential to bond, I told myself, feeling hopeful. But on the drive there, I kept fighting off this pesky fear – “What if she doesn't show up?" My insecurities were rising to the surface, but I turned them over to God, again and again.

I got to the restaurant first and second-guessed myself over and over. Sitting in the bright natural light of the foyer, I was exposed. At last, delight sprang up as she walked through the restaurant door with a big smile. I felt honored when she asked me to pray before we ate.

Our lunch together was pure joy. Swapped stories. Encouragement for writing, back and forth. Hints at hurts. Trust growing tiny roots. Sure, we have differences. Pretty wide ones in some areas. But I’m not going to let those facts stop me now.

In my 40s, I'm willing to be stretched more than I was in my teens, 20s or even 30s. One of the beauties of middle life – you simply don't care as much about the little things anymore. And perhaps, you’re even hungrier for true friendship as you age.