How important are the friends in your life? Sometimes I forget how awesome my friends are. I’m so blessed to have amazing people in my life, and I’m so overwhelmed at their kindness and their encouragement, especially in the dark times of my life.
As many of you know, I tend to be somewhat independent (stop rolling your eyes). I don’t like depending on other people, and I don’t like asking for help. But there are times when I need it. And in those times, I have an arsenal of amazing people who step up to surround me with prayer and words that have to come straight from God.
Today’s verse is Romans 12:10.
Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other.
I thought of this verse today when I thought about friendship. So much of friendship in our culture is about what others can do for us, but what I’ve learned over the years is that friendship–the ones that last–should be about what you can do for your friend.
Have you thought about that? Have you ever asked the friends in your life what you can do for them? Or is your friendship all about you?
What does it mean to show genuine affection to someone? Well, to me, that means you treat someone else kindly out of pure motivation. You do kind things for others because it’s the right thing to do, because you truly want to do it. It’s not a front. It’s not for show. It’s genuine. It’s real.
Show me a friendship with genuine affection, and I’ll show you friends for life.
But genuine affection is a concept, and concepts are great, but they aren’t good for much until you put them into practice. And that’s where the second part of the verse comes in.
Take delight in honoring each other.
Okay. That sounds complicated and religious. Well, it’s not. What does it mean to honor someone? Honoring someone is simply putting that person before yourself. It means showing preference to someone else.
Practically speaking, it’s giving your friend the bigger slice of pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving dinner.
Another translation says to outdo each other in kindness. And another translation says, “practice playing second fiddle.”
Do you need the attention in the friendship? Do you need the be the one who’s at the center all the time? Honestly, ask yourself, because if the answer is yes, I’m sorry to be blunt, but you’re missing the point of friendship.
God made friends so we wouldn’t have to stand alone, so we could be part of a team, so we could be a part of something bigger than we are. There’s a song on the radio right now with a lyric that always makes me smile: “God put a million million doors in the world for His love to walk through/One of those doors is you.”
And that is so, so true.
If you have friends, take the time to find out what they need. Ask them how you can help them. Get involved in their lives for more than just what you need. Practice playing second fiddle. Skip the attention you think you need. You don’t need it. Shower them with the attention. And something amazing will happen. Your friendship will get stronger. Your friend will grow, and so will you.
I have amazing friends who have poured themselves into my life. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without them. What about about you?