Friday, June 20, 2008

Daily Digest #80

No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends. —John 15:15

We might ask ourselves, what is a true friend? I have many acquaintances, but fewer friends. For me, they are the ones who are able to share commitment, communication and commonality with me. They are the ones who choose to listen, rather than talk, when necessary. They are those who never give up on me. They are the ones who remind me of God's grace, mercy and power. I consider them angels in disguise. There may be times when I need to be alone, and my friends understand because they are not insecure or possessive. They never despise me for my faults and shortcomings, but rather talk to me openly and lovingly about them. They are not so quick to judge. And most of all, they are the ones who never forget me in their prayers.

I got this from an article I was reading earlier. I bet we all share the same sentiments about friendship....

A true friend is . . .

"What is a friend? A single soul in two bodies." — Aristotle

You can have a lot of acquaintances, but only a few people will become your best friends. These are kindred spirits, much like David and Jonathan mentioned in the main article, whose souls were "knit together." Friendships like this will endure, even though the intensity of the friendship will ebb and flow over time.

One of the dangers in this kind of friendship is co-dependency. The sheer delight of having such a friend can also create weighty expectations in the relationship. A good question for friends to ask regularly is, "Are we truly seeking the other person's highest good?"

"A true friend stabs you in the front." — Oscar Wilde

Leave it to Oscar Wilde to lay out an important truth with such wry humor. A true friend is one who helps you see the truth, even if it hurts. This doesn't mean we can go around stabbing our friends with hurtful words. Rather, it means being up front with friends about important issues, raising gentle questions with tact and love, never gossiping or putting them down to others behind their backs.

"I do not wish to treat friendships daintily, but with the roughest courage. When they are real, they are not glass threads or frost-work, but the solidest thing we know." — Ralph Waldo Emerson

Real friendships don't just happen, and they aren't maintenance free. Ask yourself and your friend questions like these:

* "How would you describe our friendship?"
* "What is God doing in each of us, separately and together?"
* "How can we help each other become all God wants us to be?"

Seeking another person's highest good: that's being a true friend. -- End

For this, may we pray for our friends. May God be the center of our friendships. As we enter different relationships, may we never fail to build a closer one with God's son, Jesus Christ. Pray always.

Labels: ,