Navigating the Intricacies of Friendship

Two children, one showing the other her pet bird.

Recently I read a comment on someone’s Instagram post sharing the struggle of making friends. The person said “it’s just really hard to make friends as an adult.”

This might be an unpopular opinion, but I believe making friends as adults is only harder than when we were children because we’ve forgotten some basic principles. Christ commanded us to be childlike in Matthew 18:2-4 and we can learn a lot about building friendships from this:

“He called a little child and had him stand among them. And he said: "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. “

Children are open and real about their lives. They’ll tell you what they’re afraid of and be open their scars. Most of the time they have no problem sharing what they have, even if it’s just a smile and a hello.

I’ve had the blessing of building many wonderful friendships all the way through my adulthood by God’s grace. I believe this is because He showed me these principles and how we must be intentional with our friends. Obviously, I am not perfect at this and I’ve failed my friends before. But that is the beauty of friendships based around Christ. We forgive one another when the other one confesses their sin. We bear each other’s burdens in love. We give people the hard truth but as gently as we can.

I read somewhere that the five people you spend the most time with shows us our futures. The Bible has a lot to to say about friendships, notably “Don’t be deceived, bad company corrupts good character. (1 Corinthians 15:33, CEB) and “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens a friend.” (Proverbs 27:17, CEB).

To practice the principles in such Scriptures, we need to be looking for people who will grow and challenge us and then intentionally invest in those relationships. How we do that is by applying those childlike principles. We find time to cultivate those friendships. We make it clear we want to be friends with them by saying so with our words and actions.

Additionally, we must be Christ-like in that we have humility in our friendships. That looks investing in them before expecting them to give us anything. It can also look like ensuring people know that what we enjoy their company. Friendship is not born out of necessity but from a desire to care for and learn from the other person. We must listen to their hearts and let them listen to ours.

These, friends, are some of the ways we become friends as adults. It might not be easy, but it is simple. It is like Christ to build solid friendships and build one another up. As Paul wrote to the Corinthians, “Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up.” (1 Corinthians 18:1b)

Feel free to share in the comments below something that God has taught you about friendship, we’d love to know!

If you’re joining along in our weekly memory verse, happy memorizing, friends!


  • Lydia

    Hi Barb! We’re so glad you found us too! It is a wonderful thing to hear that you’re beginning your verse mapping journey! It’s one that we believe enriches our relationship with the Lord because it opens up so many insights into His character and our own to help us become a bit more like Him each time we dive into the Word. And yes to memorizing Scripture! What an incredible blessing! This Scripture Memory Journal that Lauren created really opened up my heart to Scripture in a way I hadn’t experienced before! Welcome to the community, Barb!

  • Barb

    I’m soooo very glad that I discovered your ministry! I’m beginning my verse mapping today. It was a special blessing this morning to discover that you also provide a bonus of memorizing scripture together!

    So much fun! Thanks!! 🦋

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