Having a friend is one of the most beautiful gifts we can have. In the bible there are several accounts of friendships including that of Jesus. The one i love most is the one between David and Jonathan 🙂 – couldn’t help but insert a smiley face after that :).
Before i write about their friendship however, i would like to shed a light on the friendship between Jesus and His disciples. In the bible we can see that Jesus had different circles of friends. He was a friend to Lazarus and his sisters, He had the 12 disciples, then He also had the 3 guys – Peter, James and John who i would like to refer to as those who were in His inner circle.
What can we learn from this? That we are to have our friends this way too. I feel we sometimes put so much expectation on people in our outer circle that we get hurt when they disappoint us. There are certain things that the ’12’ can’t give you. There are certain experiences that only the ‘3’ can experience with you. We bring so much drama and chaos into our lives when we bring the ’12’ with us into a season made only for the ‘3’ to experience.
People come into our lives for different reasons. There are those who are there for a season and there are those who are there for a life time. Don’t expect a situational or seasonal friend to be as loyal to you as a life time friend. Jesus didn’t bring the ’12’ to the mount of transfiguration; neither did He bring them to the garden of Gethsemane. May we be wise!
Back to the beautiful relationship between David and Jonathan. As seen in 1 Samuel chapters 18, 19 and 20, David and Jonathan’s friendship was a covenant relationship. They supported each other. They loved each other. They stood by each other. They kept their promises to each other.
1 Samuel 20 : 8 – 16
8 Therefore deal kindly with your servant, for you have brought [me] into a covenant of the Lord with you. But if there is guilt in me, kill me yourself; for why should you bring me to your father?
9 And Jonathan said, Far be it from you! If I knew that evil was determined for you by my father, would I not tell you?
10 Then said David to Jonathan, Who will tell me if your father answers you roughly?
11 Jonathan said, Come, let us go into the field. So they went into the field.
12 Jonathan said to David, The Lord, the God of Israel, be witness. When I have sounded out my father about this time tomorrow, or the third day, behold, if he is well inclined toward David, and I do not send and let you know it,
13 The Lord do so, and much more, to Jonathan. But if it please my father to do you harm, then I will disclose it to you and send you away, that you may go in safety. And may the Lord be with you as He has been with my father.
14 While I am still alive you shall not only show me the loving-kindness of the Lord, so that I die not,
15 But also you shall not cut off your kindness from my house forever—no, not even when the Lord has cut off every enemy of David from the face of the earth.
16 So Jonathan made a covenant with the house of David, saying, And the Lord will require that this covenant be kept at the hands of David’s enemies.
We all need a ‘Jonathan’ in our lives. That friend who truly sticks to u closer than a brother. That friend who is ready to throw all of his/herself into our challenges. That friend who is ready to help you walk through the challenges of life. That friend who helps you think of solutions even when you can’t see it. That friend who is ready to stand in the gap for you in prayers. ‘Jonathans’ are kept in the inner circle.
Before we start evaluating our friends, it might be worth remembering that this is a two way relationship. Are you a good friend? Can your friends depend on you? How often do you pray for your friends? Do you tear them down with your teeth and pretend to be an angel before them? Maybe it is time to do better.
You see Jonathan knew David was going to take his place in the throne but that didn’t make him jealous. He helped in protecting the life of David so he could fulfil his purpose. How many of us can do that? It’s pretty hard to help someone else sit on a throne that was meant for you. Isn’t it? Think of the prestige, honour, fame and wealth that Jonathan was willing to sacrifice just because he believed God has chosen his friend for this task.
Can you be someone’s ‘Jonathan’? When a friend shares a dream with you, are you genuinely happy for him/her? Do you try to make the conversion salty? Do you always want to steal other people’s moment? Do you always ask ‘why not me?’ Do you always wish you had the dream your friend had? That kind of spirit isn’t from God.
Instead of praying for Jonathan, let’s do something different. Pray to be someone’s Jonathan. That your friends success will not make you jealous. That you will be as happy to support your friends as much as you would want them to support you. That you will help your friend birth the vision that God has given him/her. In the end, the win of your friend becomes your win too. David was able to reciprocate the kindness later on even when Jonathan passed away. What a beautiful relationship.
Once you start being a good friend to others, God will bring good people into your life. We can be better friends. Let’s do better.