Daily Bible Inspirations
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The Health Benefits of Friendship

by Heather Tietz

A friend loves at all times; and a brother is born for adversity.

Proverbs 17:17

Did you know that solid friendships reduce stress and ward off disease? Even in the animal kingdom, chimpanzees and horses that have a larger network of friends tend to live longer. A study of African grey parrots revealed that socialized parrots age less, their DNA actually decomposes slower if they have a friend or two.

Friends and family are God-made institutions that we were created to need. God gave Adam, Eve. He created marriage. Jesus sent the disciples out in sets of two. Paul instructed the church to come together regularly. He encouraged friendships, “spur one another on to love and good deeds,” Paul said (Hebrews 10:24).

Jesus added that when two or more are gathered in His name, He would be there (Matthew 18:20). Even God Himself is a trinity. Life needs a life. Islands are for dirt, not people. Certainly not Christians.

Friends and family, imperfect as they are, need one another. So, embrace someone nearby. Pull them closer into your life. Reduce your heart rate, lower your blood pressure, increase your nerve activity, boost your immune system - be a friend.