The Shoulders of Giants

“If I have seen further than others, it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants.” -Isaac Newton

I love this quote. I’m not going to lie, almost every time I see/hear it I get emotional because it always brings to mind those people in my life who have lifted me up and helped me to become a better person.

There are plenty of people in my life who have both made an impact on me, and helped me become who I am today. Unfortunately, I don’t have the time to thank everyone, but this is my way of saying thank you to a few of my closest friends for everything they’ve done in my life. I wouldn’t be where I am today without you. (No names will be used, this is my blog and I’m fine with my name being attached to it, but others may not be. These are in no particular order.)

To the one who has always been there,

Thank you for keeping me honest and open minded. We may be two very different people, with very different outlooks on things (i.e. vegan vs. avid hunter…) but you’ve always helped me to think of things from other’s points of view. It is something that has not only helped me to learn from others, but has also helped me to be more understanding and openminded with those who hold opinions different from my own. You’ve also helped me to be completely comfortable with my nerdy side! Your ability to listen and be so nonjudgmental is something that I appreciate so much, and am trying to implement into my own life (emphasis on trying). You are one of the kindest, most generous women I’ve ever met. I know God will use the amazing talent He has given you to help countless people. You’ve been one of the most encouraging people I’ve ever met; you’ve always kept me pushing to do my best and to follow my dreams no matter how improbable. You have always been there for me, even through my rough points, and I can never thank you enough for that. Thank you for being a light to me, and for being one of my giants.

A man with many friends may be harmed, but there is a friend who stays closer than a brother. -Proverbs 18:24

To the one who has kept me true to myself,

I may not have liked you at the beginning of our freshman year of college, but you have become like a sister to me. Your openness and honesty keeps me real. I can come to you with absolutely anything and I always know you’ll not only be there for me, but you’ll also give me your honest opinion even if I don’t want to hear it. I love how you stay true to yourself under any circumstance, but also understand your flaws and work to be your best. Your love for God and your constant fight to understand Him and His will in your life is inspiring, and your honesty about your past struggles emphasizes your genuine desire for Him. You keep me spontaneous and have been the reason for some of my favorite adventures in college (including starting this blog!). You keep me honest with myself and others, and I love how freely conversation always flows with us no matter what. I love how we can talk about absolutely anything, from super deep theological conversations to screaming at football games and making comments on whose butt looks best in football pants. You will do amazing things in life, even if you have no idea what they are. You have so much to offer and I know God will use those talents to touch people for His sake no matter what you do or where you are. Thank you for keeping me real, and for being one of my giants.

Better an open reprimand than concealed love. The wounds of a friend are trustworthy, but the kisses of an enemy are excessive. -Proverbs 27:5–6

To the one who I didn’t expect to be such good friends with,

To be honest I never dreamed we’d be as close as we are, but you are someone who I know is always there for me no matter what. You’re someone who I go to for advice, because I trust you so much. We’ve been able to spend quite a bit of time together this semester, and I have absolutely loved it. When we first met I wasn’t sure how I felt about you, no offense, but you seemed a bit arrogant… I’ve since learned that you may a bit argumentative, but you know exactly where you stand on issues and you wont let people get by with holding un-informed opinions. You’ve helped me to make sure I know where I stand on key issues, and I’ve become a better informed, stronger person for it. You’ve also impacted my future in ways I can’t quite explain. You’ve never once told me what to do with my life, but I feel your example has helped me to contemplate what would be best and to go for it with all I’ve got. I know I can always ask you for advice on anything and you’ll always help without forcing your opinion. You are going to do amazing things with your life, I love talking to you about your future and knowing that nothing will hold you back from what you want to do. God has made you a wise resourceful man, and I cannot wait to see what your future holds! Thank you for your influence, and for being one of my giants.

Oil and perfume make the heart glad, and the sweetness of a friend comes from his earnest counsel. -Proverbs 27:9

To the one I swore I’d never be friends with,

(It seems like a common factor that I never start off liking those who I end up being best friends with, but oh well…) You and I are so different and yet so similar that it just makes sense. You keep me grounded; when I want to daydream and rely on feelings or impractical idealization you remind me of discipline and logic without ever holding me down. You’ve encouraged me in so many ways just with the example you set; you are by far one of the most disciplined, determined men I’ve ever met. (Seriously though, with you it’s like an art form.) You know what you want and you know how to get it and you don’t let things stop you, and it’s beautiful. The way you look at things is sometimes the exact opposite of my way, but you’ve opened my eyes to seeing things in so many new lights. You keep me humble and aware of what I should and shouldn’t do without ever bossing me around. You can help me to see where I may be at fault with a single look, but you never guilt me about anything. You’ve been an amazing influence in my life, and I love our discussions and how we can spend time together without saying a word and it’s never awkward. I know you’re always there for me, and I know that in your future God will use your amazing talent to speak to people in so many ways. You’re going into a field where you will impact so many young people and I don’t think I can think of anyone better to encourage and impact a new generation how you will. Thank you for your example and for being one of my giants.

As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. -Proverbs 27:17

To the one who showed me friendship has no bounds,

I am so glad I was able to work with you these past two summers. You’ve been a sister to walk through struggles with. We’ve both been there for each other to rant and ramble to when life gets hard. We may live over a thousand miles apart, but you’ve shown me it doesn’t matter how far away people are or how rarely or often they talk. You have always been there for me to offer advice, to offer a helping hand, or just encouragement to get through a rough day. You know my struggles and flaws, and you keep me accountable while still keeping me uplifted. Your heart for the Lord, and your desire to help others is amazing. I think you’re one of the most servant-hearted people I’ve ever met, and I love to listen to you sing praises to God. Seriously though your voice is absolutely amazing and I love how free and open you are with it. I love how when I’m with you I know I can be my crazy, awkward, nerdy self and you’ll join right in! You have a way of speaking encouragement into others lives that is so rich and honest. You have a wonderful balance of being able to keep me humble and encouraged simultaneously, and I sincerely hope I can speak the same into others lives the way you have for me. I know God will use you to great things and to reach many people with your love and compassion, and I cannot wait to see it! Thank you for encouraging me, and for being one of my giants.

Two are better than one because they have a good reward for their efforts. For if either falls, his companion can lift him up; but pity the one who falls without another to lift him up. -Ecclesiastes 4:9–10

Grace and peace,

Faye

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