"Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul." (1 Samuel 18:1)

The Lord wants us to look for the good in other people, support it, and want what is good for them. We have many opportunities to cooperate with the Lord in helping other people. At the same time, it is important to distance ourselves from evil and falsity. Along with loving others, the Lord tells us to "judge with righteous judgment" (John 7:24). This means seeing both good and evil in the true light of the Word, and allying ourselves with what is good while avoiding harsh attitudes that judge the spiritual intentions of others.

We see these qualities illustrated in the story of Jonathan's friendship with David. Jonathan was the son of King Saul of Israel. Yet, he  unselfishly helped David whom the Lord had chosen to become the next king rather than himself. He gave David his own robe, sword, bow, and belt, and later he saved David's life. 

We invite you to explore ways to nurture what is good in yourself and in those around you, to consider what judgments we can and should make and which ones belong only to the Lord, and to reflect on the quality and importance of genuine friendship. 

Highlights include

"The Lord's Example of Friendship" by the Rev. James Cooper
The Lord is able to see our true spiritual character, and He loves the good that He is able to see in us. He constantly seeks to build on that good. We must follow the Lord's own example and seek out what is good in others.

Quotes from the Lord's Word about Looking for the Good
 
  Paper Doll Chain (for ages 3-8) (PDF)
Fold the paper, cut out the figures, and open it up to see all the neighbors (with a heart shape between them).

"Looking for the Good in Other People" by the Rev. Donald L. Rose
It is important to look for good in people while also recognizing when their actions are not good.

 "Prayers and Relationships" by Allyn Ruth Edmonds Simons (PDF)
How can prayer to the Lord help us improve our relationships with the people around us? Read the article and then write a prayer of your own for a relationship which you would like to heal or improve.

An Overview of Projects and Activities for Families
Projects and activities about Friendship of Charity, David and Jonathan's Friendship, Being Friendly to What Is Good, David and Nathan the Prophet, Judging Others, Judging or Examining Ourselves, and Love of Self versus Love of the Neighbor.

 The Parable of the Ewe Lamb Coloring Page by Marguerite L. Acton (PDF)

 Categorizing Judgments (for teens and up) (PDF)
Try your hand at deciding whether a judgment call is a civil, moral, or spiritual judgment.

"Separating Good from Evil"
by the Rev. Cairns Henderson
Judgment, the separation of good from evil, is an essential part of human freedom. But what kinds of judgments are we allowed to make and what ones are beyond our ability?
 
 Measure It Back to You, audio file of a song by Karen Childs Elder (MP3)