Friends

Friends. When you have great ones, like I do, they make a huge difference in your life. True friends will laugh with you, cry with you, question your choices, hold you accountable, stick with you through thick and thin. Sometimes quite literally as you diet together and encourage each other’s healthy habits or sabotage them when you can’t resist sharing a six-scoop brownie explosion.

I can talk to my closest friends about anything and know they will love me. My friends have carried me through some very difficult times. There has never been a time I worried they would end our friendship because of something going on in my life. I can count on them. It only takes a text or phone call, and they drop what they are doing to help me. I know how blessed I am.

Last week I was reading in 1 Chronicles 27 and came across an interesting portion of verse 33. The chapter lists the names of King David’s officials and counselors, all very important men in his kingdom. Then, between Ahithophel, the king’s counselor, and Joab, the commander of the king’s army, we read, “Hushai the Arkite was the king’s friend.” That was unexpected. The name of his friend, squished between the king’s counselor and army commander. Hmm. It seems to me that would make his position of “friend” something special.

It made me smile. If someone was going to make a list of all the very important people in my life, it would definitely include my friends. But, believe it or not, I don’t have counselors, commanders, or even a guy in charge of my supply of olive oil (David had Joash for that). Maybe I should have someone in charge of my supply of olive oil. I am very picky about it and hate to run out. Although I know if one of my friends was going to my favorite olive oil store, they would ask if I needed anything. So maybe I do have someone for that. But I digress.

The bottom line is David had a friend, and he was important to him. Like my friends, I believe David’s friend was someone he could rely on in any circumstance. We have insight into David’s friendships because of the record of his friendship with Jonathan. We are told their hearts were knit together. They protected each other. They trusted each other. They loved each other. They cried when they were forced to separate. That sounds a lot like my friendships. Even though David had a number of counselors, he also had at least one close friend after Jonathan’s death. I find that comforting.

We all need a friend or a few friends to help us through life. They are there when we ugly cry. They call out our bad attitudes. They pray with and for us. They talk through tough decisions. They speak truth when we most need to hear it. They make us smile even when our hearts are breaking. In my case, they also make me laugh till I leak, which is one of their specialties. Friends help carry our burdens and make life a little sweeter. What a blessing it is to be knit together in friendship.

I’m glad God decided to list David’s friend as an important person. It reminded me how special true friendships are. I love all my friends, but especially Nedra, LouAnn, Susan, Terri, & Gerri. There, I listed them. (There are plenty more, but these ladies know too much about me not to be included here.)

“A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.” (Proverbs 17:17 ESV)