What is a true friendship? – By Elder Myrtice Rhodes
I am glad you asked! The Webster dictionary says that friendship is a relationship of mutual affection between people. Friendship is a stronger interpersonal relationship between humans, a friend is a partnership, attachment, association, bond, a tie or a union. A true friend is someone who has your back, stands up for you when others are trying to hurt you emotionally or physically. They do everything they can to make sure you stay safe. They don’t care who it is trying to hurt you and they will protect you anytime and anywhere. A friend is someone who does not judge you but will listen and understand what you are going through. A friend is someone who will make you laugh when you’re sad. Let’s discuss some close friends who we found in the Bible. There are five great friendships that I would like to discuss:
- There was a friendship between Moses and Aaron. God blesses us with friends who compliment us perfectly who helps us achieve something that we could not have achieved on our own. Moses was afraid to speak with Pharaoh, so he gave him Aaron as a spokesperson and they both accomplished what God wanted them to accomplish. This was a partnership and a friendship. Together they accomplished one of the most glorious rescues in all of history. They weren’t jealous or envious of one another and were willing to work together.
- The second friendship was between Elijah and Elisha. Elijah was the well-known prophet of Israel who called down the fires from heaven. God sent Elijah, a friend and eventually successor of the younger. Elisha the holy friendship displays another aspect, the purposeful choosing of friends Elisha attached himself to Elijah (2 Kings 2:2).
- The third friendship was between Naomi and Ruth. The book of Ruth 1:16-17 says, “do not judge me to leave you or to return from my following you. For where you go I will go and where you lodge I will lodge.” Ruth didn’t care what she had to do or where she had to go, but she knew that she was not going to leave Naomi as the other daughter did. Ruth was loyal to Naomi. She ate where Naomi ate, slept where Naomi slept, and did what was instructed for her to do by Naomi and she was truly blessed in the end.
- The fourth friendship was between David and Jonathan. They were like brothers, they were more than friends. Jonathan defied his father on every hand to protect David from any hurt, harm or danger that his father sought to do to David. Jonathan was going to lay down his life for his friend David to save him.
- And last but certainly not least, there was Jesus and Mankind. John 15 :13 says, “greater love has no one than this that a man lay down his life for his friend.” Now that is love! How many of you will lay down your life for your friend? Jesus lay down his life for us because we are his friends and he loves us unconditionally. Real friends help to define each other. In the take and give, a genuine relationship is as iron sharpeners iron. Being a friend means hearing things out when or if something goes wrong, hash things out and talk with them reasonably. Sometimes you have to learn how to rebuke, comfort and accept their faults and stick with them through thick and thin. A friend is someone who does not give up on you. You don’t need someone in your life only in the times when you’re doing good, and when things get rough, they bail. That is not a true friend. A friend will not try to change you to conform to their ideas or thoughts (i.e. the way they dress, the way they talk, the way they think). Instead, a friend realizes and accepts your unique way.
Enclosing I have adopted a saying and it goes like this: When someone comes to me and wants to talk about my friend, I’ll ask them “do you mind if I quote you on this?” And they never come back to me to talk about anyone. If you have someone in your life who is not supporting you, then I strongly suggest that you think about what role they are playing in your life. Also, consider if they still have a seat in your arena of life. If not, then I would strongly suggest that you get rid of them. People are not always put in our lives to stay, and may only be there for a season, and that season might be over.
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