Teaching your children about friendship may not be easy for many parents. There are many adults who deal with the ups and downs of relationships themselves; let alone helping their own children with their friends.
In my last post, one of the points was to place the focus on being a friend. There are a couple of Jewish Proverbs that can help us and the kids understand the importance our role as a friend.
“Iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.” ~Proverbs 27:17. Being a friend includes adding to the relationship. Just like iron tools are sharpened by using another iron piece to file it, friends do the same to each other. We have influence over each other. We all can remember our parents not approving of a new friend. Why were our parents not in approval? Most likely, that “friend” wasn’t a positive influence for us. For some of us, we were the ones that didn’t make the “Approved Friends” list by the parents. Being a friend means that we are that positive influence who will support, promote, and even challenge our friends.
“A friend is always loyal, and a brother is born to help in time of need.” ~Proverbs 17:17. A true friendship is one that is tested. It is easy to be loyal during good times. A loyal friend sticks around during the trials. Being a true friend can mean being inconvenienced because there’s never a “good time” to help out a friend. “Help” can mean a lot of things, but being there for your friend in time of need is what will make the friendship last.
Being a friend also helps us define who our true friends are or at least what true friendship looks like. Will the friendship be 50/50? No. The best friendships are 100/100. The best friendships are when the friends are all in. It’s not about having a perfect friend because there’s no such thing. Furthermore, there is no way we can be the perfect friend, but we can be a positive influence and we can be loyal. That’s how we should guide our children in their relationships as well.
I think I should keep this thought stream on friends going. What is your insight on relationships? Comments are welcomed and appreciated.