Does Your Closest Friend Meet the Relationship Level Five Requirements?
Uncommon Relationships: Experiencing the Seven Levels of Relationships – Part 7
Could there be a relationship level available to you that exceeds the relationship you have with a sibling and at the same time is not your spouse? The answer is “yes.” There is a friend you can have in your life that will be closer to you than your siblings. The question is, do you have one? In common English we call this person your best friend. However, since in common practices this term is often misused, let’s refer to this level of relationships as your “closest friend.”
“A man [person] who has friends must himself be friendly, But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” – bible.com/bible/114/PRO.18.24.NKJV
It’s a comforting thought to know that all friends are not the same. What I mean by that is this; there will be at least one (but rarely more than one) person who will be that friend who sticks with you closer than even your own brother/sister. This friend will be better to you than family.
Relationship Level Five
Level five relationships is when the relationship level begins to happen less frequently. In other words, from this level and higher there won’t be many that will ever reach this level of relationship with you. It’s reserved for one person and one person only. A level five relationship consists of that person who, not only you chose and who chose you, but the person who accepts you as you. They’re okay with you being you without the mask covering the undesirable parts of you. They cover your flaws and defend you with their life. Unlike relationship level four – inner circle, who might speak negatively of you at times, the person at level five will never speak negatively of you to any one, but you. Your relationship level five friend, will be with you even if your family walks out on you.
The Thought or Concept:
“Or if your whole body were an ear, how would you smell anything?” – bible.com/bible/116/1CO.12.14-19.NLT
You have become well aware that as members of one body we may have differing roles. This analogy is so that we’re reminded to respect the different body parts because normally we don’t. However, there will come along a person who breaks this natural inclination and will love the fact that because of your gift, the body can take in sounds or smells. There will be someone you have in life that will love the fact that you have an amazing gift and they see it that way.
When I finally came to the realization that I needed to set out to find this relationship at level five, in my normal fashion, but uncommon fashion, I looked to the Bible. Is there a practical set of guidelines that the Bible can offer for this type of relationship? My search led me to the history of David and the son of king Saul, Jonathan.
“After David had finished talking with Saul, he met Jonathan, the king’s son. There was an immediate bond between them, for Jonathan loved David. From that day on Saul kept David with him and wouldn’t let him return home. And Jonathan made a solemn pact with David, because he loved him as he loved himself.” – bible.com/bible/116/1SA.18.1-3.NLT
Not only did I use this historical account to help define the guidelines, but to also find my part to play in the relationship. Here are the five principles of a level five relationship that stood out.
- What’s mine is yours?
Jonathan took his personal possessions and gave them to David. It would have been one statement to give David another set of items, but to give David his very own was a much greater statement.
“Jonathan sealed the pact by taking off his robe and giving it to David, together with his tunic, sword, bow, and belt.” – bible.com/bible/116/1SA.18.4.NLT
At level five, whatever I have that can benefit you is yours. I share what I have to make sure my level five friends have what he/she needs. In the same way, my level five friend does the same.
- Do what it takes to make you succeed.
It would have been a natural response for Jonathan to align with his dad, king Saul, (his level zero relationship) and assassinate David, but because Jonathan and David had a level five relationship it outweighed the level zero relationship Jonathan had with his father, the king.
“Saul now urged his servants and his son Jonathan to assassinate David. But Jonathan, because of his strong affection for David, told him what his father was planning. “Tomorrow morning,” he warned him, “you must find a hiding place out in the fields. I’ll ask my father to go out there with me, and I’ll talk to him about you. Then I’ll tell you everything I can find out.” – bible.com/bible/116/1SA.19.1-3.NLT
If it means I must go into harm’s-way for you, then I will do it with no questions asked. I put myself on the line for my level-five friend and the same he/she does in return. If I succeed then my level-five friend succeeds.
- The one person who wants to help.
Jonathan makes it undoubtedly clear where his allegiance fell. This is what you’ll find when you find a level five relationship.
“Tell me what I can do to help you,” Jonathan exclaimed.” – bible.com/bible/116/1SA.20.4.NLT
Your closest friend is the one person you can count on whether he/she wants to do it or not. This friend is willing to go with you even when your family will not.
- The friend you want praying for you.
Jonathan not only was David’s level five friend, but as a level five friend, he prayed for David’s success. Jonathan’s prayer was unselfish in that David’s success meant that Jonathan would never be the rightful heir to the throne.
“So Jonathan made a solemn pact with David, saying, “May the LORD destroy all your enemies!” And Jonathan made David reaffirm his vow of friendship again, for Jonathan loved David as he loved himself.” – bible.com/bible/116/1SA.20.16-17.NLT
I gave this some thought when I read this portion and I asked myself this question. If I were incapacitated and there was nothing more human hands could do, who would I want praying for my life? This would be a requirement for who I’ve selected in the level five relationship role.
- A friend who wants more for you than they want for themselves.
Jonathan to his disadvantage gave David the advantage. His helping David, his level five friend, was more important than being the next king of Israel.
“Saul’s anger flared up at Jonathan and he said to him, “You son of a perverse and rebellious woman! Don’t I know that you have sided with the son of Jesse to your own shame and to the shame of the mother who bore you?” – bible.com/bible/111/1SA.20.30.NIV
There aren’t many people you will find who desires more for you than they desire for themselves. This is what it means to be in a level five relationship. You have more concern for them than you do yourself.
As I defined these five principles, I realized that level five is quite an uncommon relationship. More than likely you might never have a relationship like this unless you become a level-five person yourself.
Today is Friday!
I’ve just defined one of the rarest relationships a human-being could ever have and it’s that of your closest friend, but not your closest friend by everyday standards. This closest friend is one who is selfless when it comes to you and you to them.
Question: Who is that person you’d want praying for you when you can’t pray for yourself?
Thanks for visiting Kerry A. Clark & Co. Do me a favor, if you have a level five friend, send this lesson to them and get their thoughts. Until next Friday, make your life your business.