Beliefnet
Doing Life Together

friends-3320176_1280I read an interesting article about an author who wrote a book on friendships. The author made the point that the lack of friends can be a key reason why marriages fail, people are unemployed or engage in negative behaviors like overeating. His point was that when you feel unloved and unsupported, you don’t do well in many areas of your life. Like the song says, “We all need a friend.”

His suggestion was to do what he called a friendship audit. Basically, do an  inventory of your friends. Do you have one that will help you stay healthy, one that you can trust at work, one that will meet you for coffee just to talk about hobbies or things of interest, or one that will have your back no matter what?

All of us need one or two people like this in our lives-someone who will be there through the ups and downs . If we are fortunate, we find a few special people through the years willing to do life together–celebrate births, weddings, family events and mourn with us at funerals and during times of loss.

The Bible tells us about important friendships like David and Jonathan, Paul and Timothy and others. Jesus himself chose 12 men to be with him as he accomplished his life purpose  He felt especially close to one of those disciples, John. So much so that he asked John to care for his mother at his death on the cross. Friends were closer to him than family.

The biblical Solomon warns us to not choose  friends based on what they can do for us. He wisely tells us that a true friend will sacrifice for his brother and will be around when the going gets tough. And Jesus puts friendship in perspective when he says, Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends” (John 15:13).

So if you are busy and tired and thinking, this sounds good but I don’t have time to make friends,  it’s never too late to build new friendships or reconnect with old friends. Investing time in making friends and strengthening your friendships can pay off in better health and a brighter outlook for years to come. Friends are worth the effort and more important than we often admit.

 

 

 

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