I have a newsflash for you…my brain doesn’t work like most folks. (I know, you’re shocked!) As I was playing Words With Friends this week, I looked at my letters and thought, “If I only had an ‘R’ I could play the word friend.” It took me a minute to realize that friend without the “r” is fiend. Then, I thought about the irony of those two words being differentiated by one small letter. Websters defines friend as “a person whom one knows well and is fond of.” Hmmm….okay. Fiend is defined as “an inhumanly wicked person.” Ooh….my goodness! So, see what I mean? What if you’re texting your best friend and say, “Hey Fiend” instead of “Hey Friend!”? Well, I guess if they’re really your friend, they’ll understand typos happen. That’s probably fodder for another blog. And I’m done rabbit trailing. So, again….I was thinking about “r” being the only difference between those two words and naturally, my brain took a weird jump. I started thinking about all the “r” words that are part of being a good friend. Without these things, we may very well be a fiend instead of friend. Here….check out my list:
Real: Yes, real. To truly have a relationship, we must be real with one another. A few secrets here and there are fine – after all, we need our privacy! – but, for the most part, we should be able to be real, be ourselves.
Ready: Let’s face it, life is hard. When life knocks us off our feet, we need our friends to be ready to jump in and help – even if it’s only holding your hand while you figure out how to get back up. And, we need to be ready for our friends too!
Responsible: This may seem a little odd, but track with me. True, lasting friendships require work – they just do! Most of it is pleasurable work, but some days aren’t as easy as others. We must be willing to be responsible for our part of the work.
Rally: Our friends need us to rally around them – to be their cheerleader!
Rejoice: Hopefully, our friends will have happy times. We need to rejoice with them – it makes a good thing even sweeter to know your friends are happy for you!
Relish: We need to relish, to really enjoy, our friendships. After all, they’re given by God. The Bible says that Jonathan delighted in David – I’d say he relished his friendship with David.
Remember: I think the memory is an important thing in any relationship. We must remember the good times – and reminisce occasionally! (see another “r” word!) – and choose to forget the bad times.
Resilient: Remember how I said sometimes friendship is work. You aren’t always going to agree. In marriage, we know that we must work it out, but sometimes in friendship it seems easier to just walk away. In fact, I think the world as a whole would say just walk away from difficult times. I say be resilient – the good times are more than worth it. Good friends are hard to find – if you have one, you’d better do all you can to keep him or her!
Reflector: I think we should be a mirror for our friends. Sometimes, our view of ourselves is pretty distorted. We need to “see” all the good things about ourselves, though our friends’ eyes.
Rock: Yes, I know, Jesus is the Rock. It’s just a figure of speech. Don’t hate. We need to be steady and firm for our friends….rock solid.
Role Model: Sounds a bit odd, but we should be setting a good example for everyone around us. I am a better person for being friends with my bestie. Her example has led me to make good, important changes in my life (like looking in the mirror when buying a purse!). I pray that God uses me in the same way in my friends’ lives.
Okay….that’s the list. I don’t have a list of scriptures to go with it – sorry! You know all the friend ones, I’m sure. My favorites are Proverbs 17:17 and 1 Corinthians 13:1-8. What? The Corinthians verse isn’t a friendship verse, you say? I beg to differ! Proverbs 17:17 says, “a friend loves at ALL times.” (emphasis mine). And 1 Corinthians 13:1-8 tells us what love is (love is patient, kind….).
So….odd post I know….but you gotta take the bad with the good! I hope everyone reading this has a dear friend to practice on. If not, I’ll be praying and believing with you for a friend. In the meantime….
Be blessed and tell someone you love them! (like your friend!!!)