A New Lesson In Friendships!

A few months ago, I started a series of messages on Friendship!  We focused on friendship with God and friendship with others!  I love and appreciate all of my friends, but realize that I have not and I do not always show this in the way that I should.  It’s not that I don’t care or that I am not interested.  It’s just that, if I am your friend, then I am your friend and nothing is going to change that on my part.  (This is how I think in my head and heart and feel that if you know me, then you should know this about me!)  What I am learning is that while I may have an expectation that my friends accept and believe that, some of my friends need continuing reassurance.  (They may know it, but not believe it or understand it!)

When I first began to realize this need that some of my friends had, my first thought was that they are not much of a friend if they don’t know me and believe me as I am.  (I have other friends that get it and it’s not a problem for them!)  And then I slowly began to realize that everybody has their on perception.  I should be able to expect that they would work to give me the benefit of the doubt, but if they don’t or won’t, then I still have the responsibility and obligation as a friend to try to help my friend see, know and experience the real me.  Some would say:  “They are not really your friend, if they have that attitude!”  But the issue is not their being my friend.  The issue is my being their friend.  I am not responsible for their actions or reactions!  I am responsible for my own.  And even when people who say they are friends are not friendly, I have a responsibility and obligation to continue to be friendly, because that’s what friends do!  (Many times all of us think we are being or doing, but we are fooling ourselves and that is why someone in the friendship has to be willing to go the extra mile or the friendship will die!)

God is our friend and we don’t always treat God the way that He should be treated, but He patiently gives us time, space, knowledge and wisdom to figure it out!  He does this because He is our friend and wants us to be a friend back!  So, before you write somebody off, make sure that you are doing your part as a friend.  It’s a blessing for you, them and everybody.  And the best part is that it brings glory to God when we get this right!  And it is really cool, when you get to travel that extra mile together!

Thank you for being my friend and for reading this blog!  I hope it challenges, encourages and blesses you!


4 thoughts on “A New Lesson In Friendships!”

  1. The problem is that the word “friendship” has been mutilated as badly as words like “love” and “freedom” have.

    Take Facebook “friends” as a poor but telling example. Some “friends” are truly interested in you, and want the best for you. They are literally there for you. Other “friends” are only interested in what they can get from you; one example is the “friend” who only requested “friendship” to get more help in a game. Some whom you thought were true friends “unfriend” you, dropping the “relationship” when it’s inconvenient for them.

    Then there are the friends who will hurt you. Some of these are real, legitimate friends who are speaking the truth in love. Too many, though, are false “friends,” on the order of Job’s pals.

    I suspect this is where the confusion occurs. Too many of us have had our share of “fair-weather friends” and people whose words are not trustworthy. I grew up (if one could say I ever did grow up, that is) in an area where the first and greatest commandment was: Thou shalt not hurt another’s feelings. (I’m not sure precisely where that is, but it’s probably in the vacinity of 4 Heresies 66:6.) This “commandment” overrode the one about lying, of course. Of course, everybody “knew” that “everybody else” was following that commandment, so nobody’s words could be trusted. After 30 years of being away from that environment, I still have a problem trusting the words of others, especially when the actions seem to contradict the words. (Of course, trying to talk it out just results in more words that “can’t be trusted.”)

    1. Joe, One of my big problems has been the focus on others and what they are not bringing to the friendship, when what I really need to be concerned with is myself. I will be who I need to be and hopefully open to learn, so that I can be an even better friend to whoever will allow me to be!

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