Challenges / Endurance / Faith, Hope / Posts

A Difficult Parting of Ways

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Jonathan Lee

Proverbs gives several characteristics of friends and friendships. Prov.17: 17 says, “A friend loves at all times.” Prov.18: 24 says, “There is a friend that sticks closer than a brother.” Prov.27: 6 says, “When a friend rebukes you, that rebuke can be trusted.” Prov.27: 9 says, “The pleasantness of having a friend springs from his earnest counsel.” Prov.27: 10 says, “Do not forsake your friend.” These verses bring out the fact that the Lord blesses friendship and encourages us to develop them. Friendship involves three foundational elements, commitment to fulfill the responsibility of a friend, care and concern for the welfare of your friend, and affection. The word “friend” means someone you like who also likes you. This liking involves a “friendship kind of” affection based often on personality and common likes and interests.

Some friendships can never be replaced. But something from my inner man has been nagging at me for the past few days, so I sought my Lord. It broke my heart to hear His confirmation. I need to break possibly the most enjoyable, fun, intellectual, cohesive camaraderie relationship that I have ever had with another human.

We have so very much in common! We enjoy the same authors, have similar backgrounds, and laugh! Oh, how we laugh! We talk about work, about family, about vacations. I so look forward to our talks, there is always an uplifting of the spirit after our talks.

But I suddenly realized that this friendship was wrong. Wrong because I’m single and the other person is not. I did not even realize it in the beginning, just how quickly our platonic relationship blossomed.  I have personally counseled brothers and sisters in the Lord against opposite-sex relationships, friendships that can’t go any further than “friends”. It simply did not occur to me that here I was, in an inappropriate cross-gender friendship, lost in the joy of commonality and fun memories shared.

I want to honor my friends marriage. I don’t want to be the “other person” in any shape or form. Whether our casual, respectable conversations are meeting one another’s emotional, spiritual, or social needs, it’s still meeting a need that the spouse should be providing. I have reached a grey area and if i error, I want to error on the side of caution!

But Lord, it’s strictly a friendship! I’m going to truly miss my friend! We have fun, we problem solve, we understand one another!

“It’s inappropriate.”

I trust You more, Lord, to direct me in Your paths. Please protect my friends heart during this?  Let this direct the couple closer together? I so do not want to hurt my friend!

“I will.”

Thank You, Lord. Help me to always be obedient, no matter how hard it is, or no matter how strongly I want to go my own way.

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