Everybody need friends, but few understand the basics about forming quality friendships. A true friend is someone whom we enjoy mutual affection, interests and respect for. The best friends are those who are helpers in times of trouble. Those who are our advocates when we find ourselves in need are the kind of friends that are worth their weight in gold. Solomon once wrote, “A brother is born for times of adversity, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother – that is God our closest companion.” Jeremy Taylor once said: “By friendship you mean the greatest love, the greatest usefulness, the most open communication, the noblest sufferings, the severest truth, the heartiest counsel, and the greatest union of minds of which brave men and women are capable”.
When you fall in love, you are merely confirming that you need true friendship. Without verbally listing your expectations to your partner, everybody is looking for true companionship and true friendship whenever we get involved in relationship. We will however expose the scripture above regarding true friendship and also apply it in our relationships. Jesus said, “Greater love has no one than this that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. I have called you friend for everything I have learned from my Father I have made known to you.” Christ’s friendship gives us everlasting love, direction and revelation of His will for our life. Let us explore some of the essential facts about our vertical and horizontal friendships so we can appropriate these relationships. 1. True relationship which can overcome all obstacles is enhanced when we shared mutual goals, values and power. Jesus knew that the best kinds of friendships would come from an intimate relationship with Him.
Nothing comes close to the satisfaction we get when we are in close communication with the Lord Jesus. How then can I claim to be in love with someone and yet we have nothing in common that we share. How can two walk together without an agreement? 2. Friendship is enhanced when we share mutual activities that contribute to the qualitative and quantitative expansion of the kingdom of God and His righteousness. This might be best illustrated by a triangle. When two people want to get closer to one another they must first draw closer to the Jesus at the apex of the triangle. As they draw closer to the Lord in obedience, love and trust, they will find themselves drawing closer to one another. Too many people falsely assume that they can form friendships without making Christ the center of all relationships. Without Jesus at the center of every friendship it will eventually fail or cause us to put people above our devotion to God. 3. How far are you prepared to go for your relationship with your partner?
Jesus valued his relationship with us to an extent of laying his life for us on the cross. His message is very clear i.e. we need to love each other so much so that even if it means we must be ill-treated, so be it. You will enjoy your relationship and your love when you always put something in your relationship than to always expect to draw from it. Can you defend your partner against all odds or you do find yourself taking the side of those who are speaking badly about him/her? Do you take the blame for your partner’s faults even though you know that he/she was wrong? Do you part ways with your cash in order to settle the debts created by your spouse/partner? 4. True relationship requires complete transparency about each others affairs and personal life. Jesus Christ is calling us his friends because we now know everything about him and his intentions were made very clear to everybody. This passage of scripture also indicates that if you are in a relationship and there is something that you don’t know about your partner, you are not your partner’s friend but a slave and he/she is your master.