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Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up.
(Eccl. 4:9-10)
Friends are a gift from God. But good friendships don't just happen; there is a process involved. I believe there are four stages of friendship:
  1. The acquaintance stage
  2. The casual friendship
  3. The close friendship
  4. The intimate friendship
Each of these stages must be handled correctly in order for the relationship to be godly. We need God's guidance throughout the process.

The acquaintance stage takes place when you first meet someone. An acquaintance becomes a casual friend when you spend time with the person, ask basic questions, and pray.

We have the responsibility to ask God, "Why has this person crossed my path? Did You send this person?"

Once you have gone through the acquaintance and casual friendship stages with someone, you use the same standards for establishing a close friendship. Here you decide at what level the relationship should stay.

If you desire to bring the person further into your life, then you move to the intimate friendship stage, which involves best friends and even marriage.

It is important that we teach our children this process also. After years of practice in establishing what type of relationship is or isn't right for them, it will help them in their dating relationships.

It will even help them know when they've found the person whom they are to marry. Friends are a great blessing at every stage.1

Make Your Day Count
Call one of your intimate friends today to let him or her
know how much you appreciate the friendship you share.

1 Deborah Butler, Make Your Day Count magazine, (May-June 2001) pp. 28-29.

Source: Make Your Day Count Devotional for Women
by Lindsay Roberts
Excerpt permission granted by Harrison House Publishers

Author Biography

Deborah Butler
Web site: Word of Faith International Christian Center
 
Pastor Deborah L. Butler serves in ministry with her husband, Bishop Keith A. Butler at Word of Faith International Christian Center in Southfield, MI. She is a licensed and ordained minister of the Gospel.
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