I am going to admit that there times I am not a good friend.I don’t call, I don’t text, I cancel meet ups at short notice, I don’t even do WhatsApp’s groups well LOL etc. I was talking to someone the other day and I categorised myself as an extroverted introvert(if that’s even a word).
Everyone automatically assumes that I would be the life of the party cos I talk a lot (yup I know) and I am very friendly. I make friends very very easily. But even with the facade and appearance I am not the best at keeping relationships going. I had to apologise to a friend last week about this no calling thing. I am trying but still not great at it.A lot of times I can just get caught up in myself that I forget about my friends.
I was also recently reading through the story of David and Jonathan in the Bible and the dynamics of that friendship. It’s such an interesting one. I mean David was meant to be King which in the normal sense should have been Jonathan’s birthright as he was Saul’s heir. He should have automatically hated someone trying to usurp what was rightfully his.But Jonathan still loved David.
This got me thinking about ‘what sort of friend am I ?’ I thought about what yardsticks I would want to judge friendship by. Don’t get me wrong all of the above are things that friends,should and need to do to keep the relationship going(yes friendships are relationships). Contact and checking up on each other is an investment that we should seek to make to keep our friendships.
However my introspection and self reflection caused me to go a bit deeper on what sort friend that I am. I came up with the following questions;
- Do I wish my friends what I wish myself?
- Do I want to see my friends grow and be as excellent if not more excellent than I am? Would my friendship still thrive if my friend was significantly wealthier than I was?
- Am I happy or sort of resentful at their progress or successes? Do I view their success as my failure?
- Do I pray for them (if you are a person of faith)?
- Do I tell them the truth about their shortcomings and weaknesses with love and grace? Or would I rather not face confrontation?
- Do I celebrate their strengths and understand their weaknesses? Plainly speaking,do I understand the frailty of their humanity or do I hold them to a standard higher than I hold myself?
- Are there undercurrents of tension/competition in our relationship? Is there a constant need to check off lists against where we all are in our lives?
- Can I just be myself when I am with my friend (s) or do I have to ‘keep up appearances’?
- Do I go out of my way to share opportunities or things that I think I could benefit them? Or is my default ‘every man for himself in this world’?
- Do I love my friend for who they are or do I love them for what they are? Is it about what they can do for me? Am I keeping in contact just as a ‘hook'( so I can say I know this person)?
Now I know that there are no absolute yes or no’s to some of these questions.And some of them might not even be totally dependent on you . There would be some of them that could be perception vs reality. And there are some that could even be dependent on the friends countenance to you.
I know that a lot of people (you only need to read social media) have things to say about friendships and what they expect from their friends. But like a lot of things in life,I would always want to start with myself.
Am I the friend that I would like to have?
Now I am not asking these questions in a tick box capacity but there are 1 or 2 in there that could get us thinking about ways that we could do better. Please don’t take these questions as some sort of analysis to define what a ‘good’ or ‘bad’ friend you or your friend are. This is just me thinking aloud and sharing my thoughts on the issue .
As always thank you for reading. Please do like,share with others. And please do leave a comment either here or social media.I really appreciate the time you take out to read and even share with others.
Have a lovely Tuesday and week ahead
Photo credit: Pinterest and the Bible App