Recently I was having a conversation with a friend. We were doing our normal catch-up, when she asked me about my relationship with other friends and had they changed over the years and how I handled it. Previously I’d written a post about friends and I’m always referencing the blog (get used to it) but I’d really been thinking about the dynamic of some of my relationships lately and gave her my most honest answer. While I love all my friends and will always encourage and support them, I can’t stay on pause in relationships any longer. After a few giggles, because of course I added some colorful language to my remarks I explained to her like I’m going to explain to you about paused individuals.
See I truly believe that we are all here to encourage each other. Because we are all different it takes certain individuals to be in your circle to offer the encouragement you need. See, the Village isn’t just for child-rearing it’s for us as a people to become the best we can be. Sometimes in your Village just like in your family emotions run high, life happens, and things don’t always go as planned and it upsets the Village. When things like this happen I believe you have to take time to “pause” if you continue on in a mess with your emotions running wild, life throwing balls at you that you can’t catch, it’s almost impossible to function. But, if you put yourself on “pause” for a moment, gather yourself, get encouraged, and rejuvenated mind, body and spirit, then life can go on and you can begin to win again. The issue comes in when you decide to remain on “pause”. When you wallow in self-loathing or throw an ongoing pity party you are paused, it’s virtually impossible to interact with others, let alone encourage them or yourself. You become like the village statue just there for decoration serving no real purpose. Who wants to live life like that?
Go ahead, do it for yourself, place a movie on pause and leave for about 10 minutes. 10 minutes isn’t a long amount of time, but I bet when you return the TV is on sleep mode, the system is not built to just remain on pause. Paused people in your life do just that, they are paused then fall into sleep mode. Don’t get me wrong you should not ignore paused individuals, they need help, but you can’t allow them to consume you or you, yourself will be paused. What happens when a person is set on pause is normally an event that they were not prepared for happens and they can’t deal or they decide not to deal. They would much rather just stay in that moment instead of trusting that brighter days are ahead. There’s no time limit for a people pause, however when dealing with a paused person you have to determine how long you will allow your time and opportunities to be influenced by their pause. But, because you are a friend and you want to be helpful an encourager you stay with them in this place because, well, they need you too. You encourage them, you laugh and cry together, you do what you believe is necessary for this person to push play again. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t. When it doesn’t work is when you have to make the tough decision for yourself, what is your next move?
We all have a purpose and are called to do great things. We can’t do great things remaining in the same situations, doing the same things. In order to elevate you have to be willing to come off pause. But when you decide to unpause be prepared for those paused people to talk behind your back, ridicule your dream, and lash out at you. You may think that you all were never friends, but remember you are dealing with an individual who at that time can’t function with your next level of elevation. You have two choices, 1. You can decide to remain on pause with them and you both miss out on life and its amazing opportunities or 2. You can rise to the occasion, become the best version of you and pray for your paused friend. We are all moving at a different pace to the top of the ladder. Some will get there before others and that may damage your relationship with them. I hope that if you were good friends that the damage can be repaired once they are off pause, but if not, remember there is a time and season for everything, including leaving paused people.
Today evaluate your relationships with people, is there someone who is living on pause, what’s your next move?