Defining a friend for life

by Adam Bledsoe

Howdy, friends and neighbors. The definition of a friend, according to Wikipedia, is “a relationship of mutual affection between people. It is a stronger form of interpersonal bond than an association and has been studied in academic fields such as communication, sociology, social psychology, anthropology and philosophy.” The definition goes on and on. During a time of crisis, I feel we find the true definition of what a friend for life looks like.

I grew up in a very social home. My parents were both very friendly and would do anything for their friends. Oftentimes, needs of others came before their own. Years of dedicated loyalty to their employers and church family were seen when the rubber met the road. This was most evident after the passing of my mother in 2013. The visitation was exhausting. We reunited with people from years past who wanted to pay their respect to our entire family. My mom’s boss spoke during the celebration and stated how much she would be missed.

I break friendship down to a few different categories: work, church and personal. Sometimes those lines are blurred if you’re doing the friendship thing well. Does it feel awkward when these groups of friends happen to gather at an event at the same time? Maybe you don’t know what to do with your hands. That has happened to my wife and me at times which put me on edge. Many times this happens at birthday parties or similar events. The main thing in that moment is to remember to enjoy their company.

Jumping around from job to job throughout my life gives me an extended list of friends from one line of work to another. The great thing is I could call any number of people in the case of an emergency, or simply in a time of needing a shoulder to lean upon. The neat thing is you never actually know who your true friends for life will be until down the road. Sometimes friends for life can pop up without warning.

My motorcycle broke down at a gas station several months ago. I was stranded as I tried to make it to work one morning. As hard as it was, I put out a plea on Facebook to indicate my need. Several people immediately contacted me, willing to drop everything to come to my aid. It’s hard to ask for help. Sometimes I’m just downright stubborn and will do everything I can to avoid asking for help. My buddy, Osmar, jumped to action and drove me to Little Rock. Thanks Osmar! You became a friend for life that day.

Whether you call it your “Tribe, BFFs, Pal, Compadre, Amigo” or whatever else, it is important to invest in those relationships. 1 John 1 talks about how important it is to fellowship with one another and to hold each other accountable. So, have yourself some sweet fellowship and invest in those who will wrap their arms around you when you find yourself in need…kinda like now. I love you. Have the best day of your life!

Adam Bledsoe
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