12 May Friendships and Life in Chaos
I have thought a lot about friendships after reading 1 Samuel, chapters 18 & 20. I have the privilege of having a “Jonathan” friend in my life, so I understand the knitted together picture that is seen between Jonathan and David. I recognize I had little to do with this knitting together; that is was the gracious work of God. There has been much chaos in my life and in my friend’s life since that time, in our own souls, in the lives of children, spouses, work situations, other friendships, and many more. And we have relied on each other much during those times. But the biggest truth for me is that in the middle of the hardest things, we have pointed each other to Jesus, our ultimate “Jonathan” friend. And I believe we prayed for each other as much as we talked to each other. I understand the wonderful gift I have been given by God and by my friend, and I know that this kind of friendship is rare.
But I also have other friendships that have not survived life in chaos. They either slowly faded away or blew up in a flash. As I talked about this with several other women recently, we looked at the friendships from our pasts that are buried under little grave markers along the road of life labeled hurt, betrayal, unmet expectations, jealousy, forgotten, and many others. We recognized that our experiences in friendships past have significant influence on our friendships present and future. We decided to continue the conversation over the next few months to look more deeply at those influences not only on our friendships, but also on our marriages, and our relationship with God, who calls us his friends.
So here are some questions that you can think through as you look at your friendships:
- What is your definition of friendship?
- How are your friendships doing today? Do you have any real friends today?
- Do you allow your friends into the recesses of your heart and your sin, or do you have some “No Trespassing” signs?
- Are you willing to let your friends be truthful with you, or do they have to guard what they say?
- As you look at your past friendships, what are some of the grave markers that line the road of your life?
- How did you hurt those who were true friends?
- How have the hurts of friendship affected your relationship with God?
- Have you been willing to seek healing in your own heart through the power of the Gospel?
- How do 1 Samuel 18 and 20 make you long for deeper, Gospel-based friendships?
Have a conversation with a few people this week about friendship.