There can be no true friendship where there is no respect.
Respect seems like such a funny word, but it’s the correct one! If we don’t respect the character or conviction of the people we call our friends, an honest and open relationship is darn near impossible.
I am thankful to have a few women in my life whom I not only love and enjoy, but also respect immensely. These women model intelligence, humility, kindness, joy, contentment, and godliness and I want to be like them when I grow up! I come away with something new each time we are together. Not like AirPods. Character building. Wisdom and stuff.
Now, let’s be clear! I am talking about friendship friendship: the type where it’s ok to cry and ask for counsel and have snot all over your face and still feel safe and loved. We can enjoy having many acquaintances, but not everyone actually wants what’s best for us and not everyone is going to give solid advice.
It’s important to recognize the difference.
I don’t want someone being friends with me because they feel like they have to, or vice versa. If you would never take advice from me because you don’t respect my point of view, what is the point? To me, it just feels like wasting time on both ends.
It’s a hard lesson to learn, but a valuable one, I think. You can’t be close with someone when they are walking in a completely different direction.
On the other hand, if you find some faithful friends you enjoy spending time with and who consistently point you to Jesus, don’t let go!
Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.” -1 Corinthians 15:33
A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity. -Proverbs 17:17
Better is open rebuke than hidden love. Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses. -Proverbs 27:5-6
The righteous choose their friends carefully, but the way of the wicked leads them astray. -Proverbs 12:26
Perfume and incense bring joy to the heart, and the pleasantness of a friend springs from their heartfelt advice. -Proverbs 27:9