I wonder what this word means anymore? We have Friends like the TV show, pseudo family groupings of people who care about each other. We have circles of friendship, radiating outward from ourselves at the center. We have bosom buddies, those close enough to know who we really are. We have acquaintances; people we work with or know casually enough to say hi.
Then there is that rare person in our lives who defies these descriptions, they are as close as family, but have no blood relationship to us. They are as intimate as can be in a way that sexual intimacy will never come near to approximating. They understand when we need encouragement, and when we need chastisement, and are willing to give either when called for.
These people will stand up for us when our last shred of dignity has been callously stripped away. They will hold us in their arms as we grieve. They will share their wisdom and their last quarter when they know that is what we need.
They know exactly who we are, and love us in spite of our bad points. They take into consideration what is happening in our lives before being offended when we can't be what they need, because they know that we understand when they can't be what we need. Small annoyances don't even faze them, they just know and understand.
I count myself lucky; I have a few of these in my life. They know who they are. They will tell me to snap out of it when I am wallowing in my pity party, and they will dry my tears and hold my hand when there just aren't words to help. These are people whose friendship reaches right down into my soul.
THAT'S IT! Not my girl friend or boy friend, or best friend, or closest friend. These people are soul friends! Without them I could never see myself as clearly; because of them I am able to be soul friends in return.
God is good, all the time, especially when He gives us soul friends.