“THREE KINDS OF FRIENDS YOU CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT”
“Every man needs three kind of friends. The Bible says, “A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” (Ecclesiastes 4:12) It’s hard to break three ropes wound together.
The first kind of friend we men need is an older, more mature believer, a father figure, someone who has been where we’re trying to go. We need someone to be a Paul to our Timothy, a spiritual father or older brother we can hang out with and from whom we can learn what it means to be a godly man.
Finding a friend like this may require that we lay aside our pride and say, “You know, I don’t really know all I need to know about being a man of God. I’ve a lot to learn about loving my wife and my children the way I need to. Maybe I need to hook up with an older and wiser man who is walking with the Lord.”
“The second kind of friend we need is a soul brother. Somebody who loves you, but is not all that impressed with you. Somebody who’s not going to get nervous when you show up, but can deal with you eyeball to eyeball. This is more of a peer relationship, the kind that Paul had with Barnabas.
A brother is someone on your level, a friend who can relate to you where you are because he’s going through the same stuff. He can also be an accountability partner for you. The two of you can work through things together. And you can be like Barnabas to each other by encouraging each other.”
Along with a father and a brother, you also need a son. This is the third kind of friend every man needs, a Timothy to your Paul. You and I need to provide a model that younger men and boys can look up to. They need to see Christ at work in us.
A much-used word today is mentor, which simply means a tutor or coach. Now this kind of Timothy or mentoring friendship might sound scary,”
“and in one sense it is. But the fact is that it is already happening at some level in most men’s lives. If you are a father, you are a mentor whether you know it or not. If you coach kids, teach kids, or even have kids in your neighborhood, you’re doing some kind of mentoring. And chances are that some younger man at work is watching you for clues on how or what to do on the job.
This is really front-burner stuff for me, because I have two teenaged sons. What I don’t have is lots of extra time, so I am learning to be more creative with the time I have.
I include the boys in the things I’m doing as much as possible. For us, the problem wasn’t so much finding extra time, but making good use of the time we have. The reason our church in Dallas has a mentoring program for boys without fathers is so that they don’t have to grow up for eighteen years without ever knowing what a man is supposed to be like—and what a Christian man in particular looks like.”
vision, purpose, destiny,