One of the greatest benefits of choosing to make a home in an assisted living community is that you have the opportunity to make new friends and socialize on a daily basis. When you choose The Gardens in Springfield as your senior living community, you'll find a faith-based atmosphere and plenty of like-minded neighbors to share your life with.
Being a good friend to those around you is a way to make the most of these opportunities, and one way to do that is to model the friendship lessons learned from those who loved Jesus.
1. Peter: Recognizing the Worth of Others
Peter could be rash and certainly acted on his love of Jesus in ways residents of The Gardens might want to avoid — we'd like to protect everyone's ears here at our assisted living community. But something Peter models throughout the Gospels that we can emulate in our friendships with others is that he recognized Jesus for who and what he was.
Peter is one of the first to call Jesus Messiah, and he's the only disciple that has enough faith to step from the boat and tread briefly on water.
No, the people around you at The Gardens aren't the King of Kings, but they all are children of God. Recognizing that every person — staff and resident alike — is loved by God helps you treat them with the respect and value they deserve, and that can foster great friendships.
2. Mary: Being Simply With Those You Care About
The Bible tells a story about how Jesus came to the home of Lazarus and his sisters, Mary and Martha. While he was visiting there, Martha was busy with tasks like cooking and cleaning, but her sister was sitting with Jesus, simply spending time with him. Martha complained, asking Jesus to tell Mary to get to work. But Jesus refused, noting the value of what Mary was doing.
A primary lesson we learn from this story is the value of spending time with Jesus, and that's certainly important. But it also reminds us of the value of being, simply, with other people we care about. Don't let life become so busy you can't spend any time with the friends around you, and remember that you don't need a planned activity to be with those people. Simply sitting and conversing in the common areas or outdoor gardens is a great way to show friendship.
3. John: Remembering Those You Love
John, the youngest of the disciples and the only one to make it to old age, describes himself as the disciple Jesus loved. And it's clear John returned that love — even years after Jesus's death and resurrection, John remembers him, writes about him and serves him.
You don't have to wait until someone is gone to remember them, though. You can live out this Christian devotion to others in the here-and-now by visiting friends in the assisted living community who aren't feeling well or who are unable to get around as easily as they might like. Other ways to remember those you care about include attending events they invite you to, including them in your own social invites and taking part in active conversation by trying to remember the things they share with you and asking them about those things — worries, joys, family members, interests, etc. — later.
Being a good friend helps you develop supportive social circles in your assisted living community, which can bring joy and contentment to yourself and others.