We Need True Friends
JENNY and Sue are having an animated conversation. Smiles flash, eyes brighten—everything in their manner reveals intense interest in what the other person has to say. Though of different backgrounds, they obviously have a lot in common and have much respect for each other.
Elsewhere, Eric and Dennis are working together on a project, one of many over the years. They are relaxed, and laughter comes easily. As the conversation flows into serious subjects, they candidly exchange opinions. They respect each other. Like Jenny and Sue, Eric and Dennis are true friends.
These descriptions may warm your heart, making you think about your own friends. On the other hand, they may make you yearn for such friendships. You too can have them!
Why We Need True Friends
Healthy friendships are essential to our mental and physical well-being. When we are feeling lonely, however, this does not mean that there is something wrong with us. Some researchers say that loneliness is a hunger, a natural indicator that we need companionship. In any event, just as food lessens or removes hunger, the right kind of friendships can diminish loneliness or even make it vanish. Furthermore, having good friends who value us is not an unattainable luxury.
Humans were created with a need for companionship. (Genesis 2:18) The Bible says that a true friend, or companion, “is born for when there is distress.” (Proverbs 17:17) Hence, genuine friends should be able to ask each other for help when it is needed. But friendship means more than just having someone to turn to or being a companion in work or play. Good friends bring out the best in one another. Proverbs 27:17 says: “By iron, iron itself is sharpened. So one man sharpens the face of another.” As a piece of iron can be used to sharpen a blade made of the same metal, one friend may succeed in sharpening the intellectual and spiritual state of another. If disappointments depress us, a friend’s sympathetic look and Scriptural encouragement can be very uplifting.
In the Bible, friendship is associated with love, familiarity, confidentiality, and companionship. Friendships may involve neighbors, workmates, and so forth. Some also count certain relatives among their closest friends. For many today, however, true friends are difficult to find and to keep. Why is this so? Can you enjoy true and lasting friendships?