“As soon as he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.”
1 Samuel 18:1
“But Ruth said, “Do not urge me to leave you or to return from following you. For where you go I will go, and where you lodge I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God.”
The quality of our lives can be measured by our friends. It takes some of us a very long time to understand this. Often we have this mistaken belief that other things are immensely important, and we strive to make these qualities relevant and significant. But the Spirit of God is on a whole different board, and He is wondering why we aren’t there with Him. It’s time to catch-up!
To be a friend– a companion, is a significant undertaking. It involves channeling ones love and commitment to someone other than family. If we have become someone’s friend, our dedication to that person can be measured. (Not everything is intangible). So what will friendship require? My answer is simply this: All that is needful for the present moment.
Something ‘clicked’ inside of Jonathan when he talked with David. There was something of understanding and an affinity that was created between them. As I read this account I realize that this friendship was what was exactly needed for David to survive the conflicts he was coming into. Now it certainly wasn’t the full answer, but friendship would certainly help lift him above the fray.
Ruth had this exceptional relationship with Naomi. Ruth was locked on and quite intensely has made a strong verbal and volitional commitment to Naomi. She is so sincere here as she makes a vow to follow and to serve. She ‘shuts down’ her agenda and goals in order to live life through Naomi’s experience. What a generous humility and gentleness!
“Don’t forget your friend or your parent’s friend.”
Both Jonathan and Ruth embraced their new calling. Friendship is a cavern chiseled out to be an amphitheater. It is a whole bigger and more expansive than we ever thought possible. Its borders and boundaries go far beyond than a Wednesday night poker game with your buddies.
Recovering this new understanding of biblical friendship can be revitalizing. When we see the fruits we wonder how we will ever transverse the path of discipleship without companionship. It is noteworthy to point out that Jesus sent out His disciples ‘two by two’. Sometimes, it will involve a radical (extreme) shift in thinking. However, there can be an incredible boost coming from this relationship.
“Walking with a friend in the dark is better than walking alone in the light.”