If you haven't already noticed it, I'm getting a little attached to the term "manlationship." I think it's a great one word description for a particular relationship that men can have with each other. In honor of that, I'd like to describe another close friend of mine... a LIFELONG friend.
I've written about Freightrain Knox before, particularly our climatic and climactic ascent to good 'ol Rocky Top. It's a prime example of how two men can share a common love for adventure, but more importantly, a desire to SHARE that experience with ANOTHER man.
Wade mentioned how beneficial it can be to find a man to help guide you into another stage, or one who you can guide into the stage you're in; yet, I think it's just as important to find someone who's going through the SAME stage as you. Not only can the two of you share in those same experiences at the same time, but it's also a great opportunity to "compare notes."
Train was one of the first people I met when my family moved to Jefferson City, TN back in 1988. We spent 10 years together on the swim team, and we've spent another 10 years as close friends who genuinely care about each other. Unlike Train, I don't have any brothers (he's got two), but I can honestly say that he's the closest I'll ever come to having one. Sure, I've got a brother-in-law and Jimmy IS my family, but we didn't grow up together. Jeff, on the other hand, has been with me through ever stage of life. He's one of the funniest guys I've ever met and he's the most loyal, hard-working person you'll ever come across. Moreover, he's become a better man thanks to his "better half" Lindsay, just like Leslie's helped turn me around. He was my last roommate before getting married and he spent the last days of his bachelorhood at my house. We've been through some awesome adventures and the great thing is that the best are yet to come.
When I look at the relationship of Jonathan and David in the Old Testament, I can't help but think about much I care about him and want to see him succeed in life. Frankly, it's impossible for me to think that someone could misconstrue our relationship as feminine or "gay." More importantly, I can't see how men would WANT to go through life without a friend like that in their lives. Read through scripture and you'll find a host of verses that defend this type of lifestyle and while I'm not saying that men who don't have such a relationship are living outside of God's will, I do think they're missing out!
On to the next chapter!