When the superficial and functional lies and half-truths of social acquaintance fall away, you can be as you really are . . . When you are understood, you are at home. Understanding nourishes belonging. When you really feel understood, you feel free to release yourself into the trust and shelter of the other person’s soul.
We have a great need for soul friends. Someone who knows us beyond our masks. Who journeys next to us in life, shoulders our load when we cannot, and sometimes, for the sake of our soul, compels us to carry our own pack. (Galatians 6:2, 5).
Soul friends are rarely as we imagine; they typically don’t fit the “best friends forever” profile of our culture.
Soul friends are courageously honest, often unflattering, time-tested truth-tellers, well-aware of our deceptions and disguises, yet accepting of our flaws and failures.
They are unflinching in their conviction that God has a dream and design for our lives—relentless in their fight for our greatest possibilities in Christ, even when we give up.
Without such friends we can live in the illusion that we are remarkably other than we truly are. We must trust another to see what we cannot, to have faith when we have none.
Soul friends come and go with different seasons of life. Relationships change. People move on, even soul friends. But that doesn’t make them any less of a sacred gift.