Something I pray about all the time for Levi is a quality group of friends when he reaches school age. I know that a lot of kids out there struggle with finding friends with good morals, nice self esteem and ones who encourage each other to do the right thing. I went to Bible Boot camp as a teenager with people who had absolutely zero Christian friends in their schools. How disheartening!
I was uniquely blessed with a solid core group of Christian friends throughout my entire school experience. I thought it was normal, but when I learned that many kids did not have that, I felt absolutely terrible for them. My group of friends were amazing because we were always there to encourage one another and never ever felt any sort of peer pressure from other kids because we knew we all stood together. For the Lord.
I had an entire support system in my youth group, and I knew that any one of them would be there for me if I needed them. We were all great friends and most of us had known each other our whole lives. Although I had that in my youth group, there were five of us that were best friends. We were with each other all of the time. I knew that at any given time, any of these people would be there for me to laugh with or talk to. They were quality friends. The best of the best.
These four people made my teenage years such great times! We always came up with the most fun things to do on the weekends, always supported each other in our different activities, and for the most part, you rarely saw one of us without the other four. We could all be stuck in a rubber room together and have the time of our lives. They were just the kind of friends that they make movies about ... except, it was real life for me.
When most of our classmates were off in a field somewhere after Prom, we were all back at my house making fun of the hideous dance moves we encountered a few hours earlier. When other kids were getting smashed at parties on the weekends, we were out playing frisbee golf, eating out at new restaurants and going to the movies. When our classmates were flinging themselves at each other trying to find some sort of acceptance, we were all single and just content with having each other!
I have so many funny memories with these people. But, not only did we have fun together, we studied the Bible together. We prayed together. We had not only a friendly connection, but a spiritual one as well. When I look at teens now who struggle with finding where they belong, I stop and thank God for the people that he placed in my life growing up. I know He spared me from so many things because of those four. We may have stood alone from the rest of the school most of the time, but we did it together. We were a force to be reckoned with!
I'm sure none of the five of us even realize it now, but I think we were all a big part in making each other who we are today. The Lord blessed us with friendship, comradery and a place of belonging within each other. High School is such an influential time in a person's life and often the most difficult years for many, but when you have a group of friends like this, it was a some of the most happy, exciting, carefree days of my childhood.
When I pray for Levi's friends, I often ask for a group just like I had. Who knows, he may end up marrying of of them like I did. :)