I am 44 years old (please don’t share that with anyone). At this point in my life I know who my true friends are, and I’m very content with the line up. It’s a small group of women for whom I would take a bullet (they’ve certainly taken some for me). I’ve lived enough to know what constitutes a true friend, and yet year after year, I continue to learn in fresh ways what God wants from me in the friendships that He has blessed me with.

Three things that the Lord is teaching me in regard to being a great friend:

1) Covenant

Then Jonathan made a covenant with David, because he loved him as his own soul.

1 Samuel 18:3

I love the focus … Jonathan made a covenant. A covenant is a promise – an agreement that acknowledges and involves God’s purposes and His glory. Jonathan made a decision to love David forever, no matter the cost. As I get older, I realize in order for my dearest friendships to thrive for the long haul, I must make a decision to stick (Proverbs 18:24), and to view these relationships in light of the purposes of God. Life will move us, change us, try to kill us. I have decided to stick with my inner circle of women no matter what.

2) Celebrate

41 And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, 42 and she exclaimed with a loud cry, Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! 43 And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. 45 And blessed is she who believed that there would be[g] a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord. Luke 1:41-45

I adore Elizabeth. She loved Mary and celebrated what God was accomplishing in and through her. What I see all too often in friendships among women are the tendencies to compare and compete. We try to be happy for one another, but there’s a part of our heart which burns with envy and desires to win. I hate that. We must stop. According to Ephesians 3:20, there’s enough of God to bless all of us abundantly. Let’s celebrate one another.

3) Cost

No one has greater love than this, that someone would lay down his life for his friends.

John 15:13

By God’s grace, I have not had to die for a friend, but I’ve certainly laid down my life in some capacity. I’ve laid down my agenda, my comfort, and my reputation. I’ve had friends do that and more for me. Being a great friend will certainly cost you at some point. You will not go unscathed, but loving as Christ loves you is more than worth it. It is the mark of true friendship.

Friendship is a gift from God. Let’s not take it lightly, let’s be grateful, and most importantly, let’s steward the gift well.       ~Laura Seifert

Sacred Story is honored to have Laura Seifert as a guest contributor. Laura has been involved in ministry for over 15 years. Her passion is teaching women and making simple the profound truths of God’s Word. Laura is currently serving on staff with Revolution Within, a discipleship ministry in Houston, TX. She also enjoys speaking at numerous women’s retreats each year, and is currently teaching bible studies throughout greater Houston. Laura is married to a wonderful man, Jason, who serves as the Director of Campus Development at Houston’s First Baptist Church. The two enjoy spending time together with their two children Ben (8) and Beth (6).