Life in Companionship

Researchers have found that individuals with happy marriages, close friendships, and even pets live longer, healthier lives than those without companions. Having someone to confide in, or who relies on you for care, can help motivate you to get out of bed on days when you’re feeling down.

Shortly after Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt, his father-in-law, Jethro, visited him. Jethro grew concerned when he saw how much time and energy Moses was expending to help the people resolve their differences. He advised Moses to select trustworthy, God-fearing leaders to help him govern. Sharing this responsibility gave Moses the opportunity to focus on other needs (Exod. 18).

The book of Ecclesiastes notes the advantage of having someone in your life whom you can depend on. “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!” (Eccles. 4:9-10, NIV)

The apostle Paul wrote, “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ” (Gal. 6:2, NIV). A friend can literally help you bear a burden, perhaps by lifting one end of a couch or table when you move to a new home. A friend can also help you think through possible solutions to a problem, or offer comfort when you’re feeling sad or stressed.

Unfortunately, even the best friends will sometimes let you down. However, there is one Friend you can always rely on. “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged” (Deut. 31:8, NIV).