True friendship is hard to find. Many of us define friendship in various ways. Facebook defines friendship by people who ask to be your friend. Facebook’s easy quick and troll request of friendship has aided in the deterioration of the true importance of relationship. However; Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites have helped forge amazing relationships with people we would have never met.
We often focus on the negative impact of social media relationships. Recently, I’ve been given the opportunity to speak with a lot of people and ask questions regarding my business and brand from amazing people I follow on social media sites. I have been very direct about my purpose regarding the people I build with on social media. I connect because I want to grow in relationship with people. I am concerned about them as a person, I want to grow from my relationship with them and I want them to be encouraged by what I have to offer them.
In our often cold world, true friendships are hard to come by. There are many people we know, but we wouldn’t classify them as friends. Recently while using FaceTime, I had the opportunity to hear a friend explain our friendship to her 10 year old son. I never met her son, because our friendship started at work a few years ago. She moved to another state, but we kept in touch. She moved back to the state and we started to build our relationship with one another again a few months ago. Her son asked an important question while we were chatting. He said, “Who are you talking to mom?”. “My friend, Christina”, she replied. Somehow the conversation shifted to him asking how I was his mother’s friend. I am sure in his 10 year old mind he thought, “How is she your friend when I have never met her?”. She then began to explain the difference between friends and acquaintances. Her son has a tendency to call kids his best friend after only meeting them once. In his 10 year old mind everyone is his friend. She explained the importance of knowing people versus knowing about them. A conversation with someone does not make them your friend.
In our easy to share society we know about people more than we know them. I was encouraged that she told her son that I was her friend. She’s a woman that I would also call friend. I am concerned with growth for her and she is concerned with mine. She’s not the type of person to only tell me all the great stuff about myself. She’s willing to tell me about my wrongs and mistakes as well.
One of the greatest ways to define a friendship is to ask yourself the question, “If I am wrong will this person tell me about myself?”. A friend is someone who sticks closer than a brother, not someone who simply knows that we exist. A friend is concerned with why we exist and wants to help us fulfill our purpose in this world. True friendships are hard to find. It doesn’t matter where you find friendship, but it does matter how you grow the friendship. Friendships are important water for the garden, because it produces a beautiful harvest we all need for this life and the life to come.
Better is open rebuke,
Than love that is concealed.
Faithful are the wounds of a friend,
But deceitful are the kisses of an enemy.