Why do we need relationships with other people?

Read: 1 Samuel 18:1-4 & 1 Samuel 23:16

My husband and I enjoyed the solitude we found the first weeks after our move to another state, often commenting what a nice change it was to go out and not see someone we knew. Quickly though, we became lost. It was strange to be in a place where few people knew us. 

Much anticipated and welcomed was the night someone recognized us in a restaurant and took a moment to talk. Our spirits breathed deeply and took rest. Why? We belonged. 

God created in us a need for other people. David, a man who had killed lions and bears with his hands, who killed the giant Goliath, who would become the leader of Israel needed friendship. 1 Samuel describes David’s relationship with King Saul’s son Jonathan.

“Jonathan became one in spirit with David, and he loved him as himself…and Jonathan made a covenant with David because he loved him as himself. Jonathan took off the robe he was wearing and gave it to David, along with his tunic, and even his sword, his bow and his belt.” (1 Samuel 18:1-4)

Later, as Saul pursued David to kill him, “Jonathan went to David at Horesh and helped him find strength in God.” (1 Samuel 23:16) Jonathan took care of David’s physical needs of clothing and protection and encouraged David during one of the lowest and scariest points in his life. 

Why do we need relationships with other people? Just as Jonathan provided for and encouraged David, God places people in our lives to support us and help us grow. Often, when we feel guilt, worry or are embarrassed at our needs, we withdraw from others. Although being alone with God is important, persistent isolation is not God’s plan for our lives. We need to seek friends who will love us like Jonathan loved David and whom we can love in return.

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