How Can I Build This Friendship?

from Let's Talk
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I met a girl recently who is really great. She's a Christian now but had a really bad reputation not so long ago. She's told me some amazing secrets about herself, and I feel like she's really starting to trust me. I want to build a friendship with this girl, but I don't want to push myself on her. How can I initiate more friendship without crowding her?

People have a way of letting you know when you're crowding them. They might tell you to back off outright, or just stop revealing details about their life. Either way, I think you'll sense an imbalance in the friendship.

If you think your new friend is sending signals that you're crowding her, you may want to pause before you continue vigorously pursuing a relationship. You could simply ask her how she's feeling about the friendship. A less direct approach might be to wait for her to initiate your next conversation. If the conversation never happens, she's ready for a break.

Since your friend has told you "amazing secrets" about herself, I don't think crowding is a problem. My guess is, she's as interested in building a deeper friendship as you are. She likely admires your faith and appreciates your genuine care for her as a new Christian.

Good friendships take time, though. They're based on lots of mutual experiences and a growing trust in the relationship.

Invite her to come to church with you, too. It's a great way for her to be spiritually nurtured in her new faith.

Due to the volume of mail, Jim cannot answer every letter. Questions you would like considered for this column should be sent to: "Let's Talk," Campus Life, 465 Gundersen Drive, Carol Stream, IL 60188. You can also reach "Let's Talk" via fax (630-260-0114). Find more "Let's Talk" online at

Jim's most recent book, Addicted to God (Regal, $9.99), is a 50-day devotional aimed at jump-starting your spiritual life. Pick it up at your local Christian bookstore, at, or by calling 1-800-4-GOSPEL.

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