I believe in friendship – equal friendship.
Who do you consider your ‘friend’ at this point in your life? Your partner, wife, husband? Your high school or university friend? Do you have hundreds of friends or just a few with many acquaintances?
I can honestly say that my best friend at this point in my life is my beautiful wife, a friendship that has lasted fifteen years and counting. There are also many friendships that have been in existence for various lengths of time. You would have the same too. For example, I have friendships that started all the way from kindergarten (over 37 years ago) all the way to a few current friends.
You may have many people in your life you consider friends. In this day and age where the definition of ‘friends’ can mean what we have on facebook, a friend could mean something else to you. Some people pride themselves on the number of friends they have. There are many definitions. Fair enough.
In my fourty years on this earth so far, I have experienced many types of friendships and one thing has stood out: You don’t need to be a friend to everyone. Understanding this will help you ‘manage your funnel better’.
It’s just not possible to spread yourself equally with all your friends or so-called friends. Friendship, genuine friendship takes time and effort. Most of you reading this would agree.
We don’t have to look very far for a decent model. If you are a Christian, let’s remind ourselves of the model say, Jesus, adopted. He preached to, healed and helped thousands of people but he only had twelve disciples. How many of these close disciples did he invite when he was transfigured on the mountain?
Only three! You could say that he had only three genuine friends.
I recall seeing only two very good friends of my grandfather in his last few years of his life. They came around our home a few times a week just to sit and talk and reminisce of the ‘old days’. They were friends for over fifty years. I witnessed the beauty of very close, genuine friendship. It was truly a thing of beauty.
However, it was only after my grandfather passed away that I truly understood what I had observed.
With only 86,400 seconds in a day, you cannot possibly relate to every one of your friends in an equal fashion. Don’t stress if you aren’t. It all depends on the phase of life you’re in and the philosophy you adopt. Because of the finiteness of life, it is wise not to waste your precious friendship time on relationships that won’t be productive.
Don’t mis-understand me now. It is ok to lend a helping hand to a needy person but it is another to develop a friendship. Like I said, friendship takes time and hard work. It doesn’t JUST HAPPEN. In the case of the needy person, you could consider it as social work or community service or spiritual caring.
However, with a genuine friend, you and your friend will share and give equally to each other. You both get fulfilment and nourishment from being in the relationship.
For simplicity let’s break life up in to three categories to refer to relationships:
- People whom you nourish and who return little or nothing to you
- People who nourish you, but you may return nothing to them
- Genuine and equal sharing relationships.
All three categories vital to your existence but I don’t believe the first two of the three types of relationships are friendships. The third type or category is what I refer to as real friendship. You must be strong and aware enough to distinguish between them. Mixing them up could cause problems.
It is important to reflect on your philosophy regarding life and the choices you make with regards to investing in certain relationships. What is needed is discernment and making the all important choice of taking some of these relationships to the level of genuine friendship.
Friendship that lasts because it is built on equality.
Here’s my little formula for friendship: Equal friendship = Genuine friendship.
Your ‘friends’ can have a big influence on where you end up in life. Increase your awareness and seek equality and authenticity.
All the best!
Until next time,