Traits of true friendship = ______________
What separates good friends from true friends? What bumps a friend to the top of the trust list?
You need to know Scott. Then you'd know too.
Scott probably considers himself a pretty ordinary guy. He's good with his hands, likes a good steak, spoils his three dogs and loves his beautiful wife. But I consider him extraordinary. A true friend.
It's because of light. Lasers to be specific.
Consider this metaphor. Communication, vital to any relationship, is like light. It can be clear and bright or diffuse and weak. It can clarify or create confusing shadows. It can blind you or show you the way.
I love communication. But sometimes I complicate it. Like beams of light, people's words, inflections, actions (and inactions) enter my brain and refract through my internal “analytical prism” into a spectrum of multiple possible meanings. I'll often attempt the impossible task of trying to address all possible meanings in the first shot with bloated “full spectrum” responses, so as not to offend, mislead or confuse...which ironically often confuses, sometimes misleads and occasionally offends.
Scott's not like that. If I sometimes communicate like a diffuse full spectrum light bulb, he's a focused laser. If he's confused, he zaps back with straightforward questions until he's clear. And once he's zeroed in, he'll give it to you straight. With Scot I'm never confused, seldom misled and often my pride is offended.
And that's why you and I need a friend like Scott.
I really believe that selfish pride is the root of all pain, suffering and evil. So anyone who's willing to help address it in your life is invaluable. In my pride, I like to maintain a certain perception of the type of person I am.
Conversations with Scott can be exhilarating sometimes for a “perception manager” like me. He says the things I'm thinking need to be said, but am afraid to say. He daily shows me that it's possible to be real, to say what's truly on your mind in an appropriate, honest way.
Sometimes honesty, like a laser...can burn or even cut deeply. But I find Scott's laser is more often like surgery; any cutting is focused on fixing and healing.
For me, Scott's a friend who represents Jesus' disarming (or sometimes alarming) straightforwardness, his concern for truth over perception (or even political correctness).
Jesus said he came to be a light to the world. He came to communicate clearly, to do heart surgery with words. Excruciating to the proud, revealing and healing to the humble.
I pray you each have a “Scott” in your life. If you don't, it's OK, you can start with Jesus.
Traits of True Friendship: #1 Loving honesty