On Your Relationship With Your Friends

Dear Y.B.M.:

May I say a word to you about friends. What would we do without our friends? Even the Bible speaks about friends:

“A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.” – Proverbs 18:24

To me there are different degrees of friendship:

1. Friends on the periphery. These are friends who really don’t know the real you; you know one another at a distance.

2. Friends in the middle. These are people who you see more often, but you have not allowed them into the inner circle of your life.

3. Friends in the inner circle. These are those who know you and who know you well; you know them and you know them well. You also love one another unconditionally.When the winds and storms of life blow, others will run, but these friends will stick and stay.

Here are some things that you can do to create and maintain good, strong friendships:

a. This may shock you, but don’t seek friends—let God give you the friends that He wants you to have.

b. Listen to friends, but think for yourself. Don’t allow your friends to think for you.

c. Work at being friendly yourself. Remember Proverbs 18:24: “A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.”

d. Forget trying to be popular and having a bunch of friends. You will find in life there will only be a few who turn out to be your “ace-boon-coons”; that is, a “friend that sticketh closer than a brother.” So, work at developing strong relationships with these friends.

e. Allow your friends to have friends that are not your friends. I am a firm believer that just because Joe is your friend, he doesn’t have to be my friend.

f. Come through for your friends. When the winds and storms of life come in your friends’ lives, be there for them. Whatever it takes, be there for them. “You reap what you sow.”

Be a Friend That Sticketh Closer Than a Brother,


Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another, ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one.’ – C.S. Lewis

A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you just the way you are. – Author Unknown

He is your friend who pushes you nearer to God. – Selected

True friends stab you in the front. – Selected

This chapter is an excerpt from my book, Mo’ Letters to Young Black Men: More Advice & Encouragement for a Difficult Journey. Click here to find out more or to purchase the book online.