The Loyalty Factor

I’ve been reflecting a lot on loyalty lately. We can breathe a bit more easily as we walk through life when we’ve got some loyal friendships around us.

You know you have loyal people in your circle when you have no hesitation of sharing good or bad news with them. They applaud you whenever they see you climbing the ladder because they believe that your success is also their’s. They also provide their support in your times of need and show you unconditional love through your setbacks. Loyal individuals don’t compete to outdo each other. Instead, they push to sharpen one another because as one gets better, so does the other. When you truly have loyal friendships, you don’t fear being back stabbed or put down with others. While loyal friendships may stand on neutral ground with other relationships, everyone knows who your allegiance is to.

Let me be clear, here. Loyal friends don’t give you a pat on the back for your wrongdoings. It also doesn’t mean that they have to side with you on everything. It means that regardless of the situation and what others might say or believe about you, they will defend and fight for you in public and then correct you in private. They are more concerned about your emotional well-being then they are about the things that you are able to give them.

I wholeheartedly stand on the words of Bob Marley:

“The truth is, everyone is going to hurt you. You just got to find the ones worth suffering for.”

Humans are imperfect individuals, and the moment we establish relationships, the reality is we bring our baggage along with us. No friendship is perfect, but we can choose who we are willing to give our hearts to.

Now, you may be saying, I don’t trust anyone to be loyal. Well, you may have every good reason in the world to believe that and I can’t blame you. But what I do know is that it’s exhausting and no fun to live a guarded life. Let’s be honest, when you think about the people you have come across that are very guarded, would you say that they are happy? Of course not, at least not in my experience. Humans were made to love and be loved; it is the one desire that unites us all. And for that very reason, I believe our hearts were designed to withstand brokenness, and our minds were designed to forgive and repair them.

Sometimes (and I dare say this for everyone), you may have a Judas that manages to weave their way into your circle. And it’s not because you weren’t careful enough. After all, the all-knowing Jesus picked the very Judas who later betrayed him. But if it hadn’t been for Judas, we wouldn’t be talking about the gift of salvation today! We may see those who are disloyal to us as a curse, however, it is oftentimes there move against us that will propel us into the direction designed for our lives. It’s those hurtful and challenging situations that stretch us and make us wiser. We can believe that everything will serve its purpose and work out for our good in the end. What doesn’t break you will only make you stronger!

So take a moment to analyze your circle. Are you surrounded by loyal individuals, or do you feel that you constantly have to be on the lookout that someone might hurt you? And if the latter is the case, then ask yourself this question: have I built a wall around my heart due to my past experiences that is not allowing me to see the loyal people around me or do I need to create a new circle?