It’s a Saturday morning, so it’s time for cartoons. How many of you were part of the generation that looked forward to this cherished time? No school, so you woke up early…even though you couldn’t the rest of the week. You crept quietly to where your television set was located, not wanting to wake your parents. Then you were in cartoon heaven for a few short minutes/hours until the sun came up and morning routine of dressing and breakfast began. Those years didn’t last very long for me, but I remember them well. No, Winnie the Pooh wasn’t one that was one the cartoon line-up then, but he’s just a cute little guy so I wanted to include him here. And after all…he’s a great friend! Just ask Tigger.
What’s a great friend for you? We all have a set of criteria in our minds for a true friendship. For me a list would include someone to talk to about ANYTHING. Someone that supports my endeavors, my dreams even if they don’t have those same ones. (No, I’m not asking anyone to jump out of a plane with me, but they should certainly be watching if I do!) Someone that encourages through difficult times and celebrates with the good ones. Someone that cares about me and wants to share my life, whatever that may entail.
Am I that kind of friend? Do I fit the criteria that I require of someone else? Do I REALLY care if a friend is having a bad day, if they need to talk? Do I listen even though the topic is not my favorite? Am I there for the important times in their life, even if it means standing on the solid ground watching them jump from a plane? Do I truly have a desire to be part of their life and share in the ups and downs?
Examine these questions. Apply them to the people in your life that you call friends. For many of us, that group may be a select few. I’ve always said you can have many acquaintances in life. People you can enjoy being with, have fun for a time. But I think the people that meet the criteria for a true friend are much harder to find.
For me, I think that’s a good thing. I know I can’t even begin to be a true friend to hundreds of people. It would be an exhausting proposition for any of us. I can pray for many people. I can and do pray for needs of others, our country, encouragement when I know someone is burdened. I rejoice when I know a need has been met.
But a TRUE friend? I have several that come to mind. Those that have seen me through hard times and good. Those that have encouraged me, talked with me, given of their time when I know they have had better things to do. Those that have shown support in little ways, often not seen by others. I pray I have been and will be that person for others.
As a Believer, my friendship criteria comes from my relationship with God. Jesus Christ sets the standard and of course it’s a great one. If I apply what He has done for me in my relationship with others, I will be a true friend. Those ‘acquaintances’ will benefit as well. ‘What a Friend We Have in Jesus’ is an old hymn, but it has some great words to live by. You should ‘check it out’ sometime. Remember it the next time you’re sitting on a log with a group of your friends. Thank God for those people in your life that make this road we travel a little easier to bear at times and just down right fun as well. Have a great Saturday!