Finding “my people” through prayer
I felt friendless and alone. It was the summer before my junior year in high school, and as September approached, I didn’t know whom I was going to sit with at lunch, talk to between classes, or call my friends.
Throughout my first two years of high school, I’d struggled to make solid and lasting friendships. I was friendly with many of my classmates but didn’t really connect with them or have contact with them outside of school. And several times when I had become good friends with other girls, the friendships ended up falling away because of our differing interests. During my sophomore year, one friend told me in the nicest way that I wasn’t “fun enough.” She wanted to go to parties, and she also knew that drinking wasn’t something I wanted to do. So she found other friends to hang out with.
I wanted a close-knit group of friends with whom I could be myself. I wanted to feel loved and not rejected.
I’d learned in Christian Science Sunday School that God is Love. To me this was a reminder that I was meant to feel loved, not lonely. So I made a decision to turn to prayer to find healing. I’ve always relied on prayer to find solutions, and I knew that by learning more about God and my relation to Love, I could heal any problem.
I’d struggled to make solid and lasting friendships.
A family friend told us about an article in the Christian Science Sentinel called “You are dearly loved” (Laura B. Haddock, September 1, 2013), that had helped her as a teen. It changed my life. I found comfort in its message that we are each always loved because God loves us. One thought that especially helped me was, “Christian Science has proved in countless instances that it is perfectly possible not only to look to God for the love we need but find it. God really does have infinite love for us.” It reassured me that I was never out of God’s care. Whenever I felt lost or unloved, I could know that God was loving me right at that moment and that I could experience God’s love in tangible ways in my life. I was also reassured by the author’s explanation that we can “insist upon [that love] until it improves . . . all our friendships” and that this understanding will wipe away “any feeling that we are unloved, unlovely, deserted, or alone.”
Soon, the ideas I’d been praying with felt solid in my thought—real to me. I genuinely began to feel God’s love.
Then, out of the blue, a girl in my grade texted and asked me to hang out. Within a few weeks, she’d introduced me to her friend group, and I’d found my people. They all played sports, didn’t drink, and cared a lot about school. I felt loved and appreciated.
Whenever I felt lost or unloved, I could know that God was loving me right at that moment and that I could experience God’s love in tangible ways.
When school started, it turned out that we were even placed in the same homeroom. They had asked the year before to be together, but I was placed there by what appeared to be chance. But I knew it was more proof that these friends were an expression of God’s love for me.
While it seemed like these new friendships had come out of nowhere, I knew that the love they represented had actually always been there because God is its source. I’d just needed to turn away from the lie that I was alone and unloved. I’d needed to actively claim that God’s love really is ever present. I now know I’ll never again have to worry about finding friends, because I can always insist and see that God’s love will forever be there.
Truly, we are all dearly loved and can prove it!