I have three wonderful friends with incredible hearts, but drastically different personalities. At the insistence of one those friends (you'll figure out which one), I'm publishing a new article, and this is the topic on which you will become enlightened.
[Names have been changed for privacy and humor reasons]
There's an old adage that goes something like this: extroverts adopt introverts and that's how they get friends. Well, that's how I met Candice! Never one to stay quiet, Candy is the kind of gal that speaks her mind and encourages you to do the same. She's not afraid to tease you or call you out for saying something silly. She's also the most driven and motivated person I've ever met! Since literally the first day I met her freshman year, Candy has known what she wants to do with her life and where she wants to end up *cough cough* the White House. And I have no doubt that she will. Yet more importantly than being honest or funny, Candy has such a big heart for others. Her love is fierce, something you can always depend on. She's unafraid to sacrifice for the well-being of others. Our guyfriends joke that she's the mom in the group. But really, it's just that her warm heart sees the needs of others and her drive pushes her to meet them. Her language is truth, and she speaks life into others by asking them how they're really doing and encouraging them with kindness. Everyone needs a Candice in they're life to speak truth, share insight, and guide you away from the potholes you're blind too. Thank God I found mine!
Next in our merry little band is one Ida, intellect extraordinaire. She is the smartest, most interesting person I know. But don't let her genius deceive you into believing she's dull - this girl has one heck of a sharp wit! She may come across quiet, but let me tell you, this girl can be wild in her own right. Her mind has the ability to produce deeper questions than the majority of people realize is possible. The depth and quality of her insight has benefited me on more than one occasion. She has the intellect of a philosopher, the heart of a poet, the soul of a hippy, and the spirit of a rambunctious boy. She walks through life with quiet confidence and a dreamy glimmer in her eye. If you're feeling down or angsty, Ida will sit with you and gently ask probing questions to better understand your angst. But she won't try to 'sing songs' to your heavy heart. She'll sit with you in your angst, offering her peaceful company to let you know that you're not alone. Everyone needs the gentle presence of an Ida, whether it's to go on a crazy adventure or to sit by a crackling fire and exchange existential crises.
Last, but certainly not least, is our resident wild child and creative guru - Nancy. This lady has a very distinct and contagious laugh, and thank God! She is gifted with joy, and she is not hesitant to share her warmth with others. She's full of life and ideas and always down for good times. Her heart is big and soft, sensitive to the well-being of others and empathetic to their needs. She's a peacemaker, an artist, and a fun-loving adventurer. She's easy-going and undemanding of her preferences, but there's a spark in her that's wild and captivating. Fiercely loyal, she will protect those she loves from from harm, whether it's mean people or rough circumstances. She loves BIG, and you'll know it by the way she pours out encouragement, attention, and giving you frequent cameos on her Snap and IG stories. The lenses through which she sees the world are probably a Canon. She loves capturing life's precious moments and freezing them in time, and dang is she good at it. She faces life with her back straight and her chin high, choosing to see the beauty in everything and wondering at the tiny moments. To know her is to be inspired, and to be her friend is to walk through life with a living, breathing drop of sunshine.
God has used these three to bless me in countless ways as we've lived through college life together. My prayer is that if you haven't already found yourself a Candice, Ida, or Nancy, that God will bring people into your life who will speak truth, provide wisdom, and bless you with joy!