Q: Last year my best friend went away to college and we just grew apart. I’ve always been very shy and find it hard to make friends. Now I don’t have any really good friends. There are a couple of girls I would call friends, but no one to really share things in my life with. I don’t know what my problem is, but I just can’t seem to find anyone I can really trust. Any advice?

Making friends is hard! And it’s even harder when a good friend drifts out of your life (whether by choice or just because of circumstances). I do have some advice, but mostly I just want to encourage you! The feelings you have are normal. Even though God wants to be your best friend–the One you go to first with problems, the One who comforts your heart when you’re hurting, and the One who is on your mind most of all–He also delights in healthy friendships! God also promises to give those who love Him everything they need, so if this season is a little sparse in the friends department, you can trust that He has a good reason for it.

Our tendency as girls (and as humans for that matter) is to go first to other people to meet our needs, rather than to God, even though God is the only One who truly meets every need of our hearts. I think sometimes God allows us to go through dry, “friendless seasons” to teach us how to be dependent on Him instead of on others.

Seasons of loneliness are also times to think good and hard about what sort of friend we want to be to others. In other words, it gives us a chance to get our eyes off of our own wants and needs, and to look instead for ways to be a friend to the people around us. As an added bonus, those lonely times remind us just how valuable a quality friend is, which keeps us from taking one for granted in the future!

As for not finding any girls you feel you can trust, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Sure, there comes a point when you have to take a risk and open up to someone you don’t know completely (how else will you get to know that person?), but I think too many girls get hurt because they’re not careful enough about who they trust. So don’t beat yourself up too much over that.

When you have some time, read through the book of Proverbs. (Reading a chapter a day will get you through the whole book in a month). Keep a highlighter handy, and underline every verse you find that gives advice about, or applies to, friendships. Throughout your reading, ask God to show you ways you need to trust Him more, ways you can be a better friend to others, and what to look for in a quality friend. I promise it won’t be a waste of your time!

Love,