Friends having a picnic

What’s Wrong with the Friend Zone?

Sometimes as young single adults, we can feel as though we’re not developing important, eternal relationships. However, the friendships we make now might be just as important as the marriages we enter later.

"If we truly want to be tools in the hands of our Heavenly Father in bringing to pass His eternal purposes, we need only to be a friend." -Elder Marlin K. Jensen

Photo by mentatdgt

“I’m not doing great at finding an eternal companion,” my friend said one morning, “but I’m doing okay with making good friends. I wish that could be enough.” This comment made me curious: can having good friends be enough?

Of course, finding an eternal companion is an essential step in gaining exaltation, but it turns out that being a good friend is important in God’s plan too. In “Friendship: A Gospel Principle,” Elder Marlin K. Jensen explains how friendship affects and improves our lives. He says that everything we do in Church organizations and in our lives can be more enjoyable when we reach out to our friends. We can help people feel love and support in their lives as we extend our friendship to them. We can even become more like Christ, who said that “greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13). In short, as we work to be better friends with those around us, we can become better people and make the world a better place.

Young single adults sometimes feel they are waiting for the most important relationship of their lives—their relationship with a spouse. However, we can all find joy and fulfillment in our friendships as we realize that they are valuable and important too, both to us and to God. As Elder Jensen states, “If we truly want to be tools in the hands of our Heavenly Father in bringing to pass His eternal purposes, we need only to be a friend.” Maybe the friend zone isn’t such a bad place to be.  

To learn more about the spiritual importance of friendship, read the rest of Elder Marlin K. Jensen’s talk “Friendship: a Gospel Principle.”

Source: General Conference

—Emma Chapman, Mormon Insights

FEATURE IMAGE BY HELENA LOPES

Find more insights

Read more about friendship in For the Strength of Youth.

See a friendship in action in the inspirational video “One-on-One.”

Discover more about friendships in the Church by reading the Mormon Insights article “Building the Church through Friendship.”

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