Skip to content

Friendship God’s Way

Webster’s defines “friend” like this: “One attached to another by affection or esteem.” Frankly, that doesn’t do much for me.  But, what do I know, right? So I conducted an expert poll (read “texted my friends”) and asked them to quickly list the most important ingredients of a friendship.  I got a LOT of responses, and I was not surprised at all to see many, many common threads.

Here are the qualities that they shared over and over:

First and foremost, a shared relationship with Jesus.  (All that follows assumes this is true – without the bond of the Holy Spirit, I’m afraid we’re stuck with Webster’s.)

  • Jesus is the ultimate example (John 15:13)
  • Don’t be unequally yoked (2 Corinthians 6:14)
  • Serve them, don’t turn your back on them (2 Timothy 2:24-26)
  • Let your light shine before all men (Matthew 5:16)
  • So yes, be friends, but only to a point. We are slaves to different things.

Likeness of mind. Accept minor differences but stand together for the Truth of the gospel.

Unconditional love – trust, safety, acceptance, respect – that is not based on worthiness (Amos 3:3).

Time – listening, talking, doing life together.

Accountability/reproof/courage to confront. (Iron sharpens iron – Proverbs 27:17)

Loyalty/commitment – keep confidences.

My favorite example in Scripture is the friendship of Jonathan and David (1 Samuel 18:1-4, 20:17).

  • Jonathan’s father is trying to kill David.
  • Jonathan’s loyalty to David was more than to his own father and his own ambitions – he was in line to be the next king
  • After Jonathan’s death, David wrote a tribute song to him

Honesty/being real – let your yes be yes (Proverbs 17:7)

Laughter – having fun!


Shared memories, interests, adventures

Balance of give and take – good boundaries

  • Sometimes, of course, one needs more than the other, but overall it should be reciprocal
  • Husband/family must come first

Empathy – care, hugs, tears

Forgiveness and grace – for when we mess up all that stuff I just listed

  • The connection can only be as close as both are willing to make
  • To have a friend, I must BE A FRIEND

What does this say to me?  That friendships between Christian women should run much deeper than “affection” or “esteem” for one another.  It says that our friendships are life giving, and real, and we consider them to be an investment of ourselves into another and vice versa.  It also says that these deep bonds of friendship are based on things that really MATTER, and that we choose to give as well as receive, both the warm and fuzzy parts and the hard-but-necessary parts.

Psalm 141:5 says, “Let the godly strike me! It will be a kindness if they correct me, it is soothing medicine. Don’t let me refuse it.”   The word “kindness” is the Hebrew word hesed, meaning “faithful love” or “acts of authentic friendship.”   Even the loving confrontation by a friend is truly an act of kindness.

Note that we don’t need a lot of these friends (Proverbs 18:24 – A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother).

True biblical friendship goes deeper, wider, farther, longer than “affection” as Webster’s (and the world) defines it.  Will you settle for a “Webster’s” friendship?  I think I’ll opt to continue investing into the godly friendships God has blessed me with, even if it hurts sometimes.  Usually it doesn’t hurt, and usually these friendships are filled with laughter and joy.  But when it does, it’s because they are reminding me of who I am. I know that He is using these dear women to grow me and love me, and most importantly to point me back to Him. 

Please follow and like us:
Published inVulnerability and connection


  1. JK Stenger JK Stenger

    Thanks Angie
    Lovely Word-study, and I read it with joy. What is better than to fill your mind with the words of the Bible.

  2. Nellie Harmelink Nellie Harmelink

    Beautifully written! Sadly we don’t realize their value until they are gone to be with the Lord.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *