A Best Friend
by: Rich Rockwood
In L. M. Montgomery’s novel Anne of Green Gables, the character Anne Shirley says, “True friends are always together in spirit.” These words surely fit the friendship David and Jonathan had. Anne might even say they were kindred spirits.
Their backgrounds were different yet their lives intertwined. Jonathan was the firstborn son of King Saul. David was the eighth and youngest son of Jesse, a lowly sheep owner. They both were strong and energetic. David killed Goliath, the giant Philistine champion, and so came to the notice of King Saul. However, this notice soon gave way to envy in Saul that led him to try to kill David. At the same time Jonathan was pulling away from his father, becoming more a friend to David.
Finally, convinced his father really wanted David dead, Jonathan made a covenant with David. This covenant could be compared to that of “blood brothers,” two men who swear complete loyalty to each other and seal their oath with blood. They would always be there for one another.
The desire for such friendship is perennial, though rare. In a survey of more than 40,000 Americans, the June 1982 issue of Psychology Today reported which qualities were most valued in a friend: (1) the ability to keep confidences, (2) loyalty, and (3) warmth and affection. To have even one such friend in life is truly among life’s greatest joys.