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In a dog-eat-dog world it’s tempting not to trust anyone and for everyone to look out for his interest alone. And while we understand the duty to those in our family, others are often held with suspicion. Everyone cannot be in our inner circle, but communities are still built on the loyalty and bond of friendship.

All too often others are evaluated on their usefulness to us. We’re willing to keep them around and cultivate a relationship with them as long as it benefits us in the end. And we’re just as willing to cut them off the moment they can no longer help our agenda.

To be sure, this is not all bad and many of our social relationship would fall into this category. For instance, a relationship with a mechanic is pursued to the extent it allows our vehicles to stay up and running. And we naturally end the relationship when this is no longer the case.

But while utility has its place, we cannot build healthy communities when everyone is essentially using each other and there are no shared values or true loyalty present.

The bond of friendship moves relationships beyond their surface usefulness and convicts us to seek the good for each other even when it comes with a high personal cost. We have each other’s back through thick and thin.

And it’s this trust and loyalty that allows our communities to be more humane, just, and kind. We’re free to focus on the work God has given us to do – bringing more life and goodness into the world because our comrades have our back and they’re standing in the gap with us.

We create a world of distrust, isolation, and cynicism without meaningful bonds of friendship to sustain us.

There’s more to life than your own self-interest. Let the bonds of friendship remind you of the beauty and life that comes from your loyalty to each other. 

Photo by Marc Rafanell López on Unsplash

Dr. Corey Carlisle

Licensed marriage and family therapist and certified sex therapist - providing Christian counseling and soul care to individuals and couples, with a special emphasis on developing the masculine soul. Suwanee, GA 30024

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