"Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up" (Ecclesiastes 4:9.10 NIV).
A true friend is a person who will be there for you when you are in need of encouragement and love. A true friend will never leave you or abandon you when life gets tough and you need someone who cares to stand by you.
David and Jonathon were very good friends and their friendship can be an example for us. Jonathon was the son of Saul. Saul was the king and became jealous of David and gave an order for him to be killed. Jonathon wanted to save David, so he warned David of his father's intention. He himself could have been killed because he warned David. But he loved his friend so much that he risked death to help him. The Bible speaks of their devotion to each other. "And Jonathon had David reaffirm his oath out of love for him, because he loved him as he loved himself" (1 Samuel 20:17 NIV). David had to leave his friend, but made an oath with him. They both wept when they had to say goodbye. "Jonathon said to David, Go in peace, for we have sworn friendship with each other in the name of the Lord, saying, The Lord is witness between you and me, and between your descendants and my descendants forever" (1 Samuel 20:42 NIV).
Much later on, David fulfilled his promise in a great way. Saul and Jonathon were killed in battle and Jonathon's son, a cripple, was left alone. David had the crippled son found and brought to him. He sat him at his table and accepted him. David gave him the land that was his father's. King David remembered his oath with his friend, Jonathon, and helped his son. I would call that true friendship.
We are to support one another, give encouragement, and show unconditional love. "A friend loves at all times" (Proverbs 17:17 NIV). The kind of friendship that Jonathon and David had calls for love and sacrifice. Is there a friend in your life right now who needs your support? What can you do to show that person you care? Take time this week to do something nice for your friends. They need you to show them your love and compassion in a special way. Remember Jesus' words, "Do to others as you would have them do to you" (Luke 6:31 NIV).
May we learn from David and Jonathon and become the kind of friends that you want us to be. Let us encourage our friends to follow you in every aspect of their lives. Help us to take the time to care about them and show them that we care. Life seems so busy sometimes that we forget to keep in touch. Help us not to get so busy that we forget our friends and their needs.
In Jesus' name,
My husband and I have been in the ministry in one form or another for 37 years. I have had several poems published in the local newspaper. I write devotionals for my co-workers and friends. I own this article and have full rights.