How many friends do you have?
In the social media age that word friend gets watered down a lot. Facebook allows you a maximum of 5000, while a recent scientific study indicates the most you can realistically have is 150.
Personally I’d aim even lower.
I don’t need 150 or even 50 friends, I need a tribe.
“You get yourself three or four good pals; then you’ve got yourself a tribe. And there ain’t nothing stronger than that… we gotta stick together fellas. That’s the only way I see it” — William H Bonney, Young Guns 1988
A wise man once said “your enemies may stab you in the back, but your best friends stab you in the front.”
His point was that a true friend can serve as an accountability coach; someone to take you to task. Are you walking the walk? Investing in your family? Your marriage? Glorifying God in all you do?
Surround yourself with yes-men or less-men and you may never know. A friend may have your back, but a tribe has your front.
It is a tough conversation, but if your best friend or your spouse can’t convict you, who can? We all have our blind spots; working together we can close some of them. I for one, want those kinds of friends. I *need* those kinds of friends.
The bible simply says “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another” Proverbs 27:17
It is incumbent upon us to be deliberate in cultivating the friendships that sharpen us. And drop those that don’t. And occasionally be willing to have (and receive) those difficult conversations.
It is all a part of life in a tribe.