Blog: Ten Important Things I’ve Learned about Friendships
by Mrs. Celia Huntsman
It’s February (and Valentine’s Week!), a time of year when we spend some extra time focusing on the people we love and hold dear in our hearts. It’s the season to celebrate relationships, go the extra mile, and show appreciation to our friends.
Friendships have always been important in the lives of human beings—and in my life, too! As far back as the Garden of Eden, God knew that the first human, Adam, shouldn’t be alone, and so He created Eve. From creation until now, we have been incredibly blessed with the gift of friendships.
There are many great examples of friendship in the Bible. Daniel was a friend of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, and he was a good mentor and example to these men as well. Jesus was friends with Lazarus, reminding me that He knows and appreciates the value of friendship.
I believe God’s plan is for us to have positive and wholesome friendships.
Along life’s roads, there are different types of friendships. We’ll find that we have friendships that come and go, friendships that come and stay, and friendships that just never happen. We must realize that each one of these categories is part of God’s plan for us.
I’m sure you, like me, can recall friends that came into your life for a season, such as friends from high school, college, church, or even neighbors. They come, and after a while, they’re gone. Other friends come, and then things happen that end the friendship, like an unresolved disagreement or a realization that the friend isn’t good for us. Some friends come and stay forever, whether they live nearby or there is distance in miles between us. (Those are the most rare but most precious, so be sure to treasure them.) Finally, some friendships just never really happen, like when we want to be friends with someone but never completely connect with them. (We all know that feeling, right?) The important thing to remember is when a friendship doesn’t happen, it’s most likely for a reason.
Let me share ten things I’ve learned over the years about adult friendships!
1. If you are married, your spouse should be your best friend. You should want to be with him or her more than any of your friends! This is not to say your husband or wife is your only friend; we all need other friends also. Both of these relationships are healthy. (A close friendships with the opposite sex is not advisable.)
2. Never talk to your friends about problems in your marriage. If there are issues or if you’ve had a fight, do not give your friends any details.
3. Facebook friends don’t count as real friends, and Instagram followers are not real friends, either (even if they like everything you post). We need to actually spend time with people in person for our own well-being. Many will say they are loyal friends, but who can find one who is truly reliable? – Proverbs 20:6
4. It’s important to have Christian friendships. More than likely, if you have good Christian friends, they are going to encourage you, give good advice, build you up, and strengthen your walk with Christ. The godly give good advice to their friends; the wicked lead them astray. – Proverbs 12:26
5. When friendships end painfully, we should allow those hurts to help us grow.
6. If our relationship with the Lord is right, our evaluation of people is usually more accurate. (So if we sense someone is friend-worthy, for example, we reach out to that person.)
7. Just because we like being with someone, doesn’t mean he or she is good for us and should be our friend.
8. There are many people who need a friend, and we need to be open to being their friend even if it seems like an unlikely friendship.
9. We need friends of all ages—older than us, our age, younger than us, and sometimes way out of our age range. Together, our myriad of friends can help us see life clearly.
10. Good friends boost our happiness, reduces our stress, and make us a better person. As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend. – Proverbs 27:17
Maintaining friendships can be hard work, but it’s so worth it because our friendships are one of the most influential parts of our life. This February, as we think of our friends and those dear to us, I encourage you to reach out, be a good friend, and continue to develop meaningful, solid friendships that are honoring to the Lord!
Mrs. Celia Huntsman, our blogger of the week and HCA Registrar, has worked at Highlands for over 20 years. She loves to scrapbook, sing and make music unto the Lord, and drink lots and lots of coffee with other women from all walks of life. Her husband, Sandy, is a pastor at Boca Glades Baptist, where they minister and serve the Lord together. Celia can be reached at [email protected]