Monday, July 14, 2014

{how to live: pursuit}

being pursued is nice.

not in the creepy, "chasing-you-because-I'm-a-serial-killer" pursuit, but a friendly pursuit. You know what I meant. Friendly. Pursuit. I'd never have thought to put those two words together, but somehow, they fit.

Being pursued usually means you're being chased, right? Someone is following you, pushing after you, striving to stay with you. I don't know about other people, but I grew up around individuals who didn't pursue others. They expected people to come to them, and in some ways, they still do. It's hard being the object of that, but it's also hard because, after being around people like that for a long time, it rubbed off on me. I forgot that it's just as much my job to pursue others as it is for them to pursue me. And in most cases, when you stop pursuing others, they'll stop pursuing you.

this is also very true in relationships, now that I think about it. If you intend to be in a relationship with someone, you need to chase after them (again, not in the creepy serial killer/stalker way). You need to strive to pursue them in spiritual matters, in personal matters, and in emotional matters. The Bible says that a wife and a husband are not two individual people, but rather a single being. And so, if while in the dating stage of the game, you pursue one another in all the important and honorable things, the relationship will probably be in better shape than if not. Pursuing your partner in a relationship also shows that you care about them, and that you want to experience whatever they may be dealing with. This is a rather obvious detail, but I think many couples in this day and age have forgotten this, and that makes me sad.

Annnnnnnyways (that was a rabbit-trail and a half)...pursuing friends is hard. Not only are you putting yourself out there, but you're also opening yourself up to be labeled as "pushy," "clingy," and "needy." Always asking how others are, always inviting people to do stuff...sometimes it can be taken in a negative sense. That's frustrating--trust me, I know. But maybe that person doesn't need pursuing right then. Maybe they're still in that cycle of not wanting others around them--been there, done that. Eventually, though, they might wake up. Eventually, you'll find the right people who want to be chased after, to be checked upon, to be pursued.

Over the past few days, I've been pursuing and have been pursued. I wanted to see a friend before she left for college at the end of the summer. I asked if we could go see a movie, hang out, just talk. She said yes. A few hours later, another friend texted me saying that she missed me and wanted to hang out SOON.  A few weeks ago, I texted someone I hadn't talked to in a while and told her that I loved her and had prayed for her that day, just because I felt like she might need it right then. Her response was incredible. 

Yesterday, one of my best friends out of the blue said: "Can I call you and can we just talk?" And for me--that's pushing the limits. I hate talking on the phone. But I ended up saying yes, merely because I knew that she was pursuing me...and I knew what it felt like to have that metaphorical door slammed shut in my face. And what do you know--I really enjoyed getting to talk to her, and it was good for the both of us just to talk about life and faith and what we had learned over the summer. It felt really amazing.

I also pursued someone who didn't want to be pursued. It was frustrating, and it was hard, and it hurt a lot later, but at least I tried. At least I gave them an opening. And sometimes, that's all it takes. A little opening, a little door that says: "I'm willing to listen. I'm willing to talk." Sometimes, that little simple thing can do miracles.


So...I really don't know if this makes any sense at all, but it's something that's been on my heart a lot recently. Pursue people, and don't be afraid to be pursued. It's as simple as that.

3 comments:

  1. This makes a lot of sense. And I know I struggle. Because I'm not a very open person. Sometimes I wonder why some people aren't open with me, but I know part of the reason is because I'm not open with them. One of the first steps to making friends is being a friend, and letting them talk to you is only half of it. You have to talk to them. I fall flat often in this area. But recently I have been trying to do better.

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  2. Okay your blogs are perfect. You have a way of always writing about the exact topic God is teaching me! I LOVE being pursued. I love it. I crave it. I want to feel wanted. And I forget that everyone has that sense. Everyone wants to feel loved and important. But its SO hard for me to want to give that to others. Ive let so many friendships fade simply because I dont have the courage to ask them to hang out or talk. I get so awkward and scared and insecure that I don't always pursue others.

    But God has put it on my heart to do just that. To text people and ask how they are, randomly bike to someones house to deliver a letter to them and say hello, to just sit and talk with someone. I want to rekindle relationships Ive let die. And lately God has given me the chance to do so and Im very grateful.

    Sorry for the novella of a comment. I just wanted to say I love your blog and it really speaks to me:) keep writing and dont worry if people understand you or not. the people that God wants to talk to get it. so you just keep being the vessel by which He gets His point across:)

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  3. I needed that. I'm introverted, not extroverted, and I'm learning that more every day. I want to, as you said, pursue and be pursued. But it seems I'm always the one pursuing, never being pursued, and accomplishing nothing but coming across as a stalker — other than, perhaps, the occasional positive response. But those are few and far between, and usually short-lived.

    Sometimes I can tell a person is like me, just isn't sure how to respond, and so doesn't respond at all. I get that. But it makes it harder. And then I wonder, again and over again, does this person appreciate this, or are they only tolerating me, the stalker? Are we friends, or am I just acting clingy to someone who's too nice to say so?

    I just want to hide in my own little corner somewhere, reading and writing, interacting with others only when necessary or initiated by them — and mostly via the internet or texting, so that I can have the choice of answering or not, the chance to think through and perfect my responses before giving them, and so that they can ignore me if I'm bothering them. With the exception of a few close friends and family, who I'd still do things with, though the plans would still be made via internet or texting. Minimal confrontation. Minimal effort needed. Minimal rejection.

    I don't know, maybe that is the case: I'm nothing more than a bother, and everyone thinks I'm stalking them. I like the way you put this, though. And it's true. So I'm going to save this post somewhere, and come back and read it every now and then. Just to remind myself yet again that there's always at least one person somewhere who needs what I'm willing to give, and that my pursuit could be doing some good I may never even know of.

    Thank you for writing this. God bless.

    the writeress @ barefoot in the snow

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