Legion

The 20s are all about looking at those around you. You know what I notice about generous people, everyone around them seems happy. When they do well, all those that they are connected to appear to do so as well. As they succeed, so do the people backing them. It's like having an entourage of supporters hyping you and you showing them love. The funny thing is just like those people are the center of their own fandemonium, in other people's lives they are the fans. The question remains who do you surround yourself with and what's their purpose. Lock and load, armor up, this is legion.

My most beloved Biblical tale is that of David and Jonathan or the embodiment of true friendship, loyalty, and love. The Israelites foolishly requested a king (after having departed from the enslavement under the Egyptian monarchy) and made it to the promised land. They were given Saul since the prophet Samuel's own sons could not be trusted to rule.
Saul however was disobedient and on multiple occasions transgressed against the Lord by way of his messenger Samuel (especially when he failed to kill all the Amalekites leaving their king alive) and so he was cursed. Interesting thing here is the antagonizing spirit that tormented Saul was from the Lord Himself (the idea of evil being separate from God is a later development in Christianity and comes in the New Testament). So Saul is afflicted and is unfit to serve.  Samuel proceeds to the house of Jesse who had 8 sons and the lowliest of them all, David, a shepherd, was anointed king. Saul pursued David  to kill him for taking his throne. Jonathan as Saul's son betrayed his father, made a covenant with David to take care of his descendants, and at a dramatic dinner that not even Shakespeare could have penned better, Jonathan helps David escape death. Saul and Jonathan fall in the battle of Gilboa and David keeps his promise by seeking out Jonathan's only remaining son, Mephibosheth (who had a physical a disability after being dropped by his caretaker as they fled hearing about their family perishing). David's legion had kept him alive and allowed him to become the most renowned king of Israel.

The story is an epic adventure and is often sighted as one of the most distinctive accounts of friendship. What I'm saying is find your Jonathan's. The people who would do absolutely anything for you and even lay their lives down to preserve yours. They exist, they may be few and far between, but I bet they're closer than you think. These are the people you have to surround yourself with. There are no better friends than those that love you like a flesh and blood sibling. That's how powerful real bonafide unconditional friendship and it's love can be. Now more than ever it's imperative that only those that sincerely care for you  and you care for in returns are the ones you let know all the details of your life, your hopes, dreams, and aspirations. Those are the people that will make sure you reach them. Anyone else is not up to snuff. Call them what they are, acquaintances, buddies, and chums - there for the good times you have but nothing else. You need comrades, soldiers, and partners who are ready, willing, and able to go to war for you and you for them. Against all odds, no matter what, and beyond belief with a friend like that, anything is possible. That's your legion, that's your unbeatable force to be reckoned with.

There is something about certain statements that just make them stick out in your head as decisively distinctive. Last semester, one of the upper administrators at my institution made a nonchalant comment that my name kept coming up wherever they went, in various contexts, and in the most uncanny ways. Apparently my name has become a test of how well connected someone is oddly enough. I'm vaguely aware of my ubiquity but what she said further really hit home with me when she said that everyone who knew me was doing well. With various pockets of people all over campus and the community, there's no other way that they were connected except by knowing me. In the moment I didn't think much of it but looking back it was really profound. What does that mean? That's a lot to say about a person. Their lives are better because they know you. What a gift it is to have such an impact. Again, the same applies to others in doing the same for me as well. My legion may be larger than I could have ever imagined.

As a friend, I think we have an obligation to improve the lives of those around us. If you're not making someone's life better aren't you inherently making it worse or else you don't serve a purpose? I know that friendships must have meaning. They must be worth something. They have to cost you. Their reward however is beyond measure. If nothing is at stake, your time, energy, emotion etc. then you're not giving your all. That's does both you and your friend a disservice. I think you have to know that your friendship is legendary, must be highly prized, and distinctly sought after. People should feel you even when you've gone. You have to offer something irreplaceable - yourself! If you get, yes get, to be friends with me that is a serious privilege because that means I'm committing my entirety to you. When you don't respect or reciprocate that you dishonor what friendship really means, loving someone else as if they are you. Don't forget that. Don't devalue your friendship. Don't give it out to just anyone. Know your legion.

It's my first post of the year and usually that entails resolutions but my generation has claimed they're out so what I am committing to is to respecting myself and treating my friendship like Jonathan's (he was prince afterall).

My blog post question for the day is ... if you could pick three celebrities to add to your social circle, who would you pick? For sure I'd make friends with AnnaSophia Robb, Dylan O'Brien, and James Wolk - the compassion, humor, and kind-heartedness would be great.

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