Are you ready to take an honest look at your friendships?
It’s not easy. But it is important.
If you decide you are investing in relationships with people who are not being true friends to you, it’s important to know that you don’t have to end those relationships. You may simply guard your heart and your time a little more carefully.
How do you know if a friend is a true friend?
A true friend:
1. Is Interested – A true friend does not have to share every interest with you, but they should be open-minded and curious about the things that are important to you.
If we merely try to impress people and get people interested in us, we will never have many true, sincere friends. Friends, real friends, are not made that way. ~Dale Carnegie
2. Is Honest – A true friend will tell you if you have spinach in you teeth. They will tell you if your thoughts and actions are self-destructive. They will tell you the truth . . . but will do it in a way they shows they care about your feelings.
Giving an honest answer is a sign of true friendship. Proverbs 24:26
3. Is Balanced – A true friend values the balance between giving and receiving. They will reach out, call, invite, and listen. I’m not suggesting you keep score, but each should feel loved and valued in the friendship.
Friendship is two-sided. It isn’t a friend just because someone’s doing something nice for you. That’s a nice person. There’s friendship when you do for each other. It’s like marriage – it’s two-sided. ~John Wooden
Friendship is always a sweet responsibility, never an opportunity. ~Khalil Gibran
4. Is Trustworthy – A true friend keeps promises. You can count on them. They keep your secrets.
If they will do it with you, they will do it to you. ~Dr. Phil
So ask yourself, “Does my friend:”
- gossip to you? If the answer is yes, they will gossip about you.
- cheat others? They will cheat you.
- lie? They will lie to you and maybe even about you.
- judge others? They are judging you.
- unforgiving? They will at some point fail to forgive you.
5. Is Kind – A true friend cares about your feelings. They will not push your hot-buttons intentionally.
Constant kindness can accomplish much. As the sun makes ice melt, kindness causes misunderstanding, mistrust, and hostility to evaporate. ~Albert Schweitzer
6. Is Encouraging – A true friend knows your dreams and helps you stay pointed in the right direction. They will cheer you on when you’re discouraged, pray for you, and remind you to have hope.
A friend is one who strengthens you with prayers, blesses you with love and encourages you with hope. ~Anonymous
7. Is Forgiving – A true friend will not carry around a list of your past offenses. They will quickly give the same forgiveness they want you to give to them.
He that cannot forgive others breaks the bridge over which he must pass himself; for every man has need to be forgiven. ~Thomas Fuller
Finally, don’t be too hard on your friends. Remember, that you are not a perfect friend. You are not always kind and encouraging. You are occasionally in a hurry and fail to give your friends the attention they need. You are not always punctual . . . that’s enough. I’m sure you get the idea.
One last quote that is good for us and for our children:
When you choose your friends, don’t be short-changed by choosing personality over character. ~W. Somerset Maugham.
Many blessings to you my friends. I am so very thankful for you.
Photo Credit – BossFight.co