These days, people have begun to refer to their friends as their “squad.” An ideal squad looks perfect, does everything together and can conquer the world.
Honestly, the “squad goals” phenomenon sets up targets no one can achieve in real life. Even Taylor Swift’s idealized #squadgoals fall apart somewhere. If I had the most perfect “squad” tomorrow, complete with flawless Instagram stories, it would not bring satisfaction or lasting joy.
I started thinking about what my actual squad goals would be and which people I would want in my real-life squad. What would be a squad that would be lasting, encouraging and push me more toward Jesus? So often the pressure is towards the fading world. But who are the people pressing me to the eternal and the One who matters most? I’ve come up with a few people that I hope will always be in my squad.
I need someone who will tell me what I need to hear, even when it’s hard. This person pokes and prods parts of my heart that are a little tender. They do it in a way that isn’t just truth for truth’s sake, but with grace and love. Jesus always did this. He shared the truth out of his great love.
I need people in my life who don’t just hear me, but who listen and ask questions to know more. These are people who dig down deep into my heart, laugh with me, cry with me and celebrate alongside me. These people help carry the burdens of life. Christ calls us into community, and He calls us as the church to circle around each other, caring for one another.
Part of the blessing of learning about Christ and growing in my own walk with Him is getting to be on mission for Him daily. I hope to always be investing my life in some way into someone else. As I pour my life into someone, I learn more about myself and about God’s loving character.
I want to keep growing and learning more about the gospel. One of the best ways I can grow is through learning from someone who has already walked the steps before me. I want to learn from someone who can share their wisdom, as well as their mistakes. Someone who has experienced life can share the ways they have grown through the years. As I pour myself out into the lives of others, I need to also be learning from those around me.
One of my favorite ongoing text threads is with a few friends that I share absolute nonsense with. We share banter, tears, laughter and ridiculous GIFs. Sometimes, it’s refreshing to the soul to just have fun! Laughter and fun are gifts from God.
Christ spent a lot of time with the tax collectors and sinners. So often, it can be easy to hang out with people who are just like me. However, I learn so much from people who are different from me and see the world a little differently. When someone has experienced life in a way that perhaps I never will, they challenge and shape me. Christ calls us to go out and share the gospel with those around us. We can only do that by building relationships with those around us.
Who are the people in your squad? Are there any gaps? You can trust God to fill these gaps and guide you into the community He has for you.
About the author: Melissa Thomas has been a Cru staff member since she graduated from Miami University of Ohio in 2006. After spending her first year doing campus ministry in Liverpool, England, Melissa spent nine years ministering to college students in Cincinnati, Ohio. She currently works at Cru’s headquarters in Orlando, Florida. She loves to cast vision for how God is working in the lives of college students across the globe. In her free time, Melissa enjoys all things coffee, exploring new places and learning about people’s stories.
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