Good Friends

 

Written by Matthew Macaulay Chatthop Staff

I’ve noticed a trend in recent times.

Many people no longer seem to describe friends as simply friends, but they’ve begun to put a qualifying adjective in front of the noun. I’ve even heard it coming out of my own mouth before I’ve realised what I was saying.

The phrase that seems to be something of a possible disease in some circles is this:

“My Good Friend.”

This phrase has been recurring over and over again; both on my social media feeds and also in conversations. Here’s the hard part: it’s often used when linking oneself to someone who has been somewhat successful or well-known.

Surely the very definition of someone being a friend should be enough of an introduction to the loyalty, value and affection that we have placed in this person.

What I’ve discovered is, although of course there are exceptions to the rule, the ‘good’ part of the sentence usually means that the person is using their friend as a means to accomplish something for their own benefit or qualification.  It’s like they either need this particular friend in order to get somewhere or to validate their own value by association. In some ways it’s a bit like we are all taking deposits from our friends’ accounts to spend without permission or a signature. We have become so entrenched in climbing ladders and promoting our next product, idea or vision that we are in fact losing friends - not gaining any - and often unable to keep the ones we have. We are becoming a relationally poor society, when ironically we’ve never been more “connected”.

In no way am I disqualifying people’s relationships or attacking the validity of friendships; but, I am daring to suggest that we need to stop and take a moment to assess our motives and maybe re-calibrate our desire for deep, long-lasting relationships -- that when all is said and done might cost us just as much as they benefit us.

It’s time to wholeheartedly invest all the currency we own in cultivating deep, real, and life giving friendships.

After all, we all need friends...

People that will find it in themselves to love us, the more they know us. How amazing!

People that will journey with us through the depths of despair and the heights of victory.

People that will stay loyal to us even in the middle of our greatest failure.

People that will remember and remind us who we are.

People that will challenge and confront us when we need it.

People that will pray for us.

People that will be family when we don’t have any.

People that bring fun, adventure and freedom to our existence.

The list could go on and on. Friends are pretty incredible!

 

I don’t need  ‘good’ friends. I just need friends that are real, and I also need to be a friend.

 

I encourage you today to pick up the phone, arrange a coffee or invite your friends to dinner. Friendship is awkward, clumsy and inconvenient; but in my experience it’s one of the most special gifts that God has given us. Let’s not get so immersed in leveraging relationships that we transform our friends into relationships that serve our needs. After all, Jesus himself led the way by no longer calling us servants, but friends.