She's one of those friends who gets me down to me deepest soul, and we talk almost every day. We pray for each other and for our marriages and kids and churches. We encourage each other on the hard days. But this past week? It was days of not hearing from her, except for a few short bursts of communication in the way of emoticons and a quick hello.
"Maybe she hates your guts," my husband said.
"That's probably it. She probably doesn't even like me," I said.
It's a little game we started playing – I don't know when. When some delay of communication happens in a relationship, Matt and I play "Let's Imagine The Worst Case Scenario." Even though we're in our 40s, we are still often insecure people who worry about how people feel about us, but we know this insecurity can suck the life out of relationships if we let it. So my husband and I acknowledge insecurity by playfully exaggerating what we feel in our hearts.
She hates me.
My spouse must be mad at me.
My boss must think I'm a total loser.
Reading between the lines – it's a social skill that requires grace instead of jumping to the worst conclusion.
In the Bible, we read this instruction to followers of Christ:
"Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others." (Philippians 2:3-4 ESV)
So what is a girl to do when she doesn't hear from someone important in her life, and those feelings of insecurity loom large?