I don’t quite know what male-bonding looks like, but sister love can go something like this:
A true girlfriend will tell you when something’s amiss that is not showing up in the mirror.
A true girlfriend gives you her last Shout wipe when you spill grape juice on the front of your blouse.
A true girlfriend doesn’t mind (too much) that you snore at the lady’s weekend retreat.
And so it goes…
I like finding true comradeship in the most unlikely places—it’s actually something easily taken for granted. True friends don’t grow on trees; they grow in compost, in the refuse and throw-away parts of our lives. When it all hits the fan, true friends are at their best.
Here are a few of my favorite examples:
Many readers of the Bible are familiar with the story of Paul going to Rome as a prisoner, and although he passed on the warning from God about the impending catastrophe…
“Men,” he said, “I believe there is trouble ahead if we go on—shipwreck, loss of cargo, and danger to our lives as well.” But the officer in charge of the prisoners listened more to the ship’s captain and the owner than to Paul.
Here’s the thing that is generally overlooked—Luke, the doctor and the author of the gospel with his by-line, was also on this voyage. I’m sure he heard the prophecy and knew what was ahead, but stayed with Paul anyway. He could’ve said, “Hey, brother, catch up with you in Rome”, but no.
Jonathon, son of King Saul, (David’s predecessor), had a guy to carry his armor, a kind of royal pack-horse. Israel was at war with the Philistines (so what else was new?) and Jonathon hatches a daring plot to take out a handful.
“Let’s go across to the outpost of those pagans,” Jonathan said to his armor bearer. “Perhaps the Lord will help us, for nothing can hinder the Lord. He can win a battle whether he has many warriors or only a few!”
Here we have two against twenty, an Old Testament scene out of a Marvel Avengers movie! And the nameless side-kick’s response?
“Do what you think is best,” the armor bearer replied. “I’m with you completely, whatever you decide.”
Last one: Jesus is hanging on the cross, and all of His disciples have fled…except one.
When Jesus saw his mother standing there beside the disciple he loved, he said to her, “Dear woman, here is your son.” And he said to this disciple, “Here is your mother.” And from then on this disciple took her into his home.
John was that man.
Here’s an important point—even the Son of God, in His human-ness, demonstrated His need for true friends, which should tell me quite a lot about my need for true friends.
Yes, people are weird, and they will let me down. Then I realize that I’m in the same bucket of weird, very capable of letting others down as well. But that was no excuse for Jesus, so it cannot be an excuse for me.
Besides, you never know when you’re going to need that next Shout wipe.
Acts 27:10,11; 1 Samuel 14:6,7; John 19:26,27 Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.