Wednesday, October 21, 2015

On Friendship: Having A Core Group


This post has been drafted in my heads for probably two months now and when Kiki and Sarah shared that this month's theme for The Circle Linkup was how you take care of yourself I knew I finally had to put my thoughts into writing.

If you are stopping by the blog today first off, welcome! Secondly, my husband and I are about to finish up a year long in Myanmar (Burma). We teach at a Christian school targeting Buddhist children and my husband also runs a medical clinic at school. This post is a little heart to heart about how friendships have been vital for me this year while living in a 3rd world country. 


Before we moved to Myanmar I somehow got in touch with a blogger who sent me an article about having a 'core group'. Sadly, I don't remember that sweet blogger's name nor can I find the article but I do remember what it said and apparently The Lord knew I needed it this year.

The article talked about how when you move abroad you need a core support group back at home. It talked about having friends that you can really open up with and share how you are really doing abroad. One thing I thought was really good was that the article spoke about having a friend who knew you and your spouse really well. It talked about how sometimes people who have known you as a married couple before marriage, during the dating stage and the current stage are good supporters because they can help give you some well-rounded marriage advice. It isn't that people in the country you currently live in can't offer godly wisdom but they haven't known you for the past 10+ years. Your friends from waaaaay back when know all the history and can help see the overall bigger picture.


Living abroad in Myanmar this year has been good but I'll be honest and tell you it hasn't all been good. It has also been down right super hard. We are far away from everything familiar and had to jump into life here and try to figure it all out. It's a 3rd world country and everything logic of how a country should run is done the opposite here. I don't say that to complain or be mean it is just how it is.

Also, this is the first place I have lived where I don't have at least one of my closest long term friends around and that has been a new, sometimes hard, thing for me. Yes, I have friends here and I'm so thankful for them. Yes, I have Dave and our marriage is stronger than it ever has been but sometimes you just need one of your girlfriends to say "OH MY WORD! A ROOOOACCCCH!" and have them scream right there with you.

So, how did I make it this year? I'll tell you! I got my core group and stayed connected. Now, technology here is absolutely backwards too so Skype isn't a thing but I'll tell you the two tools I use to stay in touch - voxer (an app that works like a walkie talkie) and FB Messenger. Funny, right?

I'm telling you what though - I firmly believe God gave me those tools because He knew I would need them. I talk to my core group about 3 -5 times a week. I usually listen to their messages in the morning and then respond on my walk to school. It really blesses my heart to wake up and see that I have messages to listen to from friends. We share anything from normal life to telling them I'm having a super hard time here and needing prayer, to telling them that Dave and I need prayer, etc. etc.

So today I'm going to share who my core group is because it is a variety of people. Also, if my core group is reading this I want them to know how much I love and appreciate them. 

*side note - I'm not listing all my family on here...that's another post coming*

Steph & Holly - These are my 2 sisters. We vox a lot and share everything sisters could ever share.

Shenel - I've known Shenel since I was 15. Her husband Jeremy and Dave have been friends since they were practically babies. Shenel is my go to person if I need prayer about marriage. She is also understanding but extremely sarcastic and somehow that makes our friendship really fun.

Alisha - Alisha and I lived abroad in Korea together so she understands life abroad. She usually gets the message of "A roach is near me!" ha ha! We also share prayer requests and we even help each other stay accountable to memorize verses.

Kirsten - We are work spouses from the Hyatt. Kirsten is my runner friend and has a fun sense of humor. More than that though she always takes the time to really ask me how I am and sometimes I just need that.

Elicia - Elicia is my newest friend but we hit it off right away. We met through blogging and have only actually met once in real life. However, we both live in a 3rd world country, are married and are somewhat emotional twins so we stay in touch a lot. 

Those ladies right there are my core! I'm so so thankful for them and I love that God gave me a variety of friends. 

I share all that about friendship for two reasons. First - be that kind of friend to someone! The Bible says you are more blessed by giving than receiving and giving of yourself in the form of friendship is a true gift. 

Secondly, I encourage you to find a group of friends that could be your core group.  I'm so grateful for my core group of friends, it brings tears to my eyes thinking how blessed I am and I hope to be that kind of friend to them. 

Do you have a group of core friends? 
If you have any other questions about this for me please feel free to comment or e-mail me. 

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Lastly, if you want to join in the linkup and meet some amazing ladies just click on the button below. 

6 comments :

  1. I am so, so glad that you have had some core friends to support you and Dave this year. It really is important to ahve friends like that for all seasons of life, and I love what you said about friends that knew you before and after your marriage. Jordan and I don't really have too many friends like that, and now that you mention it, I wish we had more! I am sure living abroad and away from family is HARD. I don't know if I would be able to do it. But you are such an encouragement to me, and I love your positive, Christ-like attitude. Keep being a light!

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  2. Ahhhh gosh I just love this idea of a "core group" and I think it's going to be something that stays with me for a long time especially if we land up moving for PA school. There is so much wisdom in the idea of having people around you that know you and your history and I'm so grateful that you have some of those people. Sometimes I get sad because I would say all of my core friends don't live that close to me and I wish they did, but the important thing is that I have them and we can support each other without living geographically close. I'm so glad you were able to put the thoughts and ideas of this post into words, so good!

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  3. My siblings and a few of my cousins tend to be my really tight friends, along with college buddies, but my college friends are the type that are horrible at keeping in touch, and yet we're all perfect the minute we get in a room together. For some reason a lot of my friendships tend to go like that. I think having a huge family has definitely led me to not look so much elsewhere for the core group--I've got 6 siblings, that's kind of a lot of people who I know are with me till the end, till death do us part. But it's good to have some non-related people, too, it's just a little harder for me to open up because we move around so much--the longest I've lived in the same place anywhere was from when I was 0-9 years old, ever since it's been pretty much 3 years, tops.

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  4. Such good advice! I have a core group of college friends and a core group of friends here. It's nice because I know they each have different perspectives. My college friends have known where I've been, and my local friends understand what life's like now!

    P.S. I'm totally aware that I owe you an email! Life is crazy!

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  5. I've been thinking a lot about this idea lately. I think the overall tone of "community" in the church world tends to borderline on making a lot of connections and getting to know a lot of people. As an introvert, that SCARES ME. Up until the last month or so was when I finally realized that it's OKAY to have a smaller, core group of friends. It doesn't mean there's something wrong with me if I have a hard time connecting with a lot of people. I loooooved this post!

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  6. I love that you talked about core groups of people--it's so important for everyone to have, but especially when you've moved or are in a new location. I've always been an introvert so I tend to shy away from meeting new people, but it's something that's been on my heart for a year or so now and have been praying for opportunities to meet people my age and in my lifestage and just have that core group to pray with and grow alongside. So thank you for being another sweet voice and reminder that I need it, even if I don't always want to be super social. :)

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