Hey Friends —
Welcome to another Friendship Friday Giveaway! Remember, each Friday I giveaway a fantastic resource written by a fabulous friend or favorite author on my Facebook Ministry page. I’m glad you are here!
Today’s giveaway is an awesome new book called Heart Sisters: Be the Friend You Want to Have by Natalie Snapp.
I had the chance to meet Natalie at the She Speaks Conference a number of years ago. Natalie is warm, authentic, wise, fun, and passionate about Jesus, her family, and her friends. I just love her, and if you haven’t met Natalie yet, I know you’re gonna love her too!
I recently had the chance to ask Natalie more about her new book. Here’s my friend Natalie sharing more about her #HeartSistersbook —
So Natalie, what led you to write Heart Sisters?
About four years ago, I was charged with leading a ministry of roughly 70 women. I noticed that when misunderstandings emerged between women, it wasn’t always handled in a way that would be pleasing to God. Unfortunately, I witnessed gossip, competition, and comparison in this culture of lovely Christian women. These ladies are loved and valued by God and created for a purpose only they can fulfill; however, walking through conflict in a way that honors God was a mystery to most. In fact, my friends who are not Christians seemed to handle conflict between one another better than Christian women.
I wanted to read a book with my ministry team that would encourage women to love and support each other with advice on how to work through the inevitable conflicts as well as how to forgive, when and how to establish relational boundaries and teaching our daughters how to be good friends. When I searched for this book, I couldn’t find one – so I wrote it!
Why do women need friendships? Isn’t their spouse enough?
While the marriage institution is a sacred union and very important, women still need each other. According to the popular Harvard Nurses’ Study, not having a strong network of female friends put you more at risk for high blood pressure, high cholesterol and a high heart rate. In fact, not having a girlfriend support system poses the same risk to your health as smoking and being overweight.
Also, while I love my husband . . . let’s get real: there are some things men just can’t understand about women because they don’t see through the female lens.
So many women have been deeply hurt by other women and don’t feel safe making new friendships. What would you say to them?
I would say “I so understand. I’ve been there.” After nursing my wounds and giving myself time to heal, I came to the conclusion that to deny myself the gift of true, authentic friendships would be giving fear a victory. We can’t always control what happens to us but we can control how we react. With each hurt, we grow wiser and are more able to identify who would be considered a safe person and who would not.
How would you advise a woman who is in the midst of a conflict with another woman now?
I would encourage her to use what I call the P.E.G. System. The first step of this system is to pray. Ask God to reveal your role in this conflict and how you can learn and grow from this particular situation. Humility is critically important in all relationships! The second step would be to examine. During the examine stage, there are three questions that need to be answered:
- Am I going to be able to be around this person without thinking about the hurt?
- Will this impact our friendship?
- Will I be able to trust this person in the future?
If your answers indicate there would be a problem in the future, then the next phase is to go directly to her. As followers of Christ, we are commanded in Matthew 18 to first go to the person who has hurt us and speak the truth in love. If both parties possess humble hearts and are more concerned with their relationships rather than being “right,” then conflict can actually make your friendship even stronger.
Wow, thanks, Natalie!
I love Natalie’s P.E.G. System — Pray, Examine, and Go. Don’t you? If you want to read more of Natalie’s book, please go here. You can also sign up for her FREE 5-Day Crawling Through Conflict with a Friend Challenge here.