Friends are friends forever…if the Lords the lord of them…
That is the song that comes to mind when I think of Nate and his friend Taylor.
Long before Grace Community Church, Taylor’s parents were friends of ours. They were core members of our church plant and helped launch our small group ministry. Nate and Taylor have both played significant roles in various ministries in our church. They are both leaving for college this Summer and will be greatly missed, not only personally, but for their contribution to the church as volunteers. Thankfully Nate plans to attend Moody and Taylor plans to attend Wheaton, so they will be less than an hour from each other. I hope their friendship lasts a lifetime.
Taylor’s parents were intentional with us in encouraging the boys’ friendship. In fact, part of the motivation for our friendship was so the boys could be friends. We began early in their life trying to get them together as much as possible. It’s easy when children are young to control their friendships. It becomes much harder when they get older to make sure they make wise choices in choosing friends. When we launched our church they were two of the original youth group together. Their friendship blossomed. It has been such a blessing to both of them through their high school years to each have a friend to hold the other accountable.
My advice to parents is to surround your children with kids they can be encouraged by later in life. Pick your children’s friends, while you can, based on their parents. (I wrote a similar post about this type of parenting HERE.) Look for people who share your values, share your discipline philosophy, and are heading their children in the same direction you want your children to go. Then get your children around those children as much as you can. Hopefully you will instill in your children the skills of picking the right kinds of friends wisely that will carry over into other periods of their life.
Thank you Taylor for being a great friend to Nate! I love you and I am going to miss you almost as much as I will him. I just won’t be sending you money. (Sorry.)
Have you ever tried to pick your children’s friends? Do you wish you could now?