What is the true meaning of a friend? The definition gets fuzzy in today’s society. A person attached to another by admiration affection or high regard. A person whom aids, assists and supports another. That is the dictionary definition of a friend.
How ever friendship is so much more than that. That person you can trust with anything, and will tell you the honest truth no matter how it may affect you. The person whom knowing the truth will hurt you will stay by you as you freak out at the harsh reality.
A friend knows your short comings and instead of ridiculing, nit-picking and lecturing takes you as you are because of the endearing bond you share.
So who can you truly call your friend?
Well that is a matter of choice. When an acquaintance shows “friendly” attributes, do they deserve to be promoted? When someone you consider a friend begins to take advantage of the benefits of said friendship do they deserve to be demoted?
That person you met a week ago at the inner harbor, exchanged phone numbers with, and made plans to meet again are they your friend?
Friendship is a two way street the affection and bond should be shared.
Ask yourself the following questions.
Can I be myself around this person?
Can I speak openly about my views, ideas, interests with them?
Do they judge me, ridicule me, or make me feel inferior?
Can I trust them with a secret that I would shudder to speak in confession?
If I truly need their assistance, would they offer it? Would there be a cost?
Do we enjoy each others company?
If you can answer those questions with more positive outcomes than negatives than they are doing there part to show friendship. Now answer these.
Do we talk to each other just to talk? Do I only call when I need something? Do they only call when they need something?
Do I judge, ridicule, or belittle them?
Can I keep a secret that they would shutter to speak in confession?
If they truly needed my assistance would I offer it freely?
Do I respect their ideas and beliefs?
It’s hard to see two sides of a coin when it’s laying on a table. And friendships are a two sided coin. The next time you question a friendship take the time to flip the coin over and see if you are doing your part as much as they are doing theirs.
For the friends you do have, celebrate them. Take the time to converse with no real reason. Take a trip to the Aquarium, to the inner harbor, to the next Ravens or Orioles game and enjoy each other.
Friendship is not just a fleeting term. Like love it is a bond worth cherishing and building upon. A true friend is for life. And can be the most blessed gift. Choose them wisely, admire them often.