Musing -What’s the true essence of friendship?

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I’ve been thinking a lot about friendship. True friendship, not the microwave, what’s in it for me relationships we now have these days. I’m talking about friendship like the one between David and Jonathan, the kind of friendship where you’re willing to sacrifice much for the other person. The kind where you love like the world is going to end tomorrow.

The word ‘friend’ has been one that I don’t throw around carelessly. In fact a few years ago, I described most people as ‘an acquaintance’ because I believed the word friend should be used strictly for people who know you, get you and love you. Years later, I realised that there are different categories of friends. There are those who come into your life for a season, there are those who are there occasionally and there are those who stick with you till the very end.

I’ve bungled quite a number of friendships, mostly due to fear of the unknown. I have been taken for granted a lot…which is why most of the times I try to ‘protect’ myself from people. Despite these fluctuations, one thing has always remained true – I will give my all to anyone who is truly my friend. When I go in I go all in and when I’m not interested, it will only take the grace of God for me to gain interest in you.

Once I consider you to be my friend, I will carry your matter on my head. You become a regular feature in my prayer points. You become my object of care, worry and love. Most importantly, I’m always looking out for how the lives of my friends can get better. One of the things I find difficult to understand is how people can use another person. I don’t understand how you will enter into a relationship with ulterior motives. And I definitely do not understand people who deliberately stab others in the back. I’ve tried to see what will make someone turn against another who has been there for them in time of need but I can’t still make much sense of it. It happened to my dad. This is a man who doesn’t believe in friendship in the first place but the few people he trusted not only stabbed him in the back, they threw him to the wolves. Scary stuff!

I have experienced betrayal but I have also experienced the true joys of friendship and I think the world needs people who will love and treasure one another unconditionally. You know that agape type of love that God has for us? We need that kind of love amongst ourselves. Love that is selfless. Love that puts the interests and needs of others above personal interests. Love that is not vindictive. Love that is true, enduring and come what may, love that says I will always be here for you.

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Let’s treasure people and let’s value the friendships that we have. No relationship is perfect. You will have disagreements with your friends. You will get hurt by them and you will hurt them but please value that friendship. And let’s truly be selfless. We need to stop using people. If you want something that someone has, I think it’s better for you to pray to God about that thing rather than you using and dumping that person.

The world is filled with too many people with stab wounds on their hearts. For most of them, they will remain wounded for the rest of their lives while for a privileged few, the wounds make them become stronger and better.

I apologize to everyone who I have ever hurt, intentionally or unintentionally and it is my prayer that you will turn that pain around into something glorious. And for those who have ever hurt me, I love you (sincerely and from my heart).

Go into this week determined to be a better friend. And also reach out to those you may have hurt and apologize to them. You can make the world a better place by that simple act.

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