Everyone will experience difficult times, but having friends will make it easier to get through life, Beth Vaughn Cole, dean of the College of Nursing, advised students at Tuesday’s devotional.
“Friendship is one of the greatest blessings we can have,” Cole said. “Our friends provide comfort and counsel. They accept, or at least tolerate, our peculiarities and often laugh spontaneously at our jokes. Most of all, they are really quite forgiving of our imperfections.”
Cole encouraged students to focus on four aspects of friendship: making friends, having a wide variety of friends, making your spouse your friend and making Christ your friend.
Students have many time-consuming responsibilities and activities while at school, but it is still important to make and develop meaningful friendships, Cole said. A good friend can make deep changes in a person’s life.
“I hope that you will have time to make friends — good friends, maybe even lifelong friends. You can learn so much from them,” Cole said. “A friend is kind to you, knows and likes you, wishes the best for you.”
Cole highlighted the importance of making friends with all different types of people. We can learn much from friends who have different personalities and cultures, she said. It is especially important to make friends with a wide variety of people on a campus the size of BYU.
“There is often a great deal of loneliness on a campus this large,” she said.
It is also important to be friends with your spouse, Cole said, as most students will get married and spend most of their free time with their spouse.
“While your affection for one another is a good beginning for a strong relationship, it may take more to sustain a lifelong relationship,” Cole said. “You must make time for each other.”
Spouses should encourage each other to develop talents and interests and to listen to each other’s concerns, dreams and interests, Cole said.
“Include each other in your everyday lives,” she said. “Learn to appreciate that your spouse is unique or different from you. Seek to understand them.”
Finally, and most importantly, everyone should seek to develop a “precious relationship” with Jesus Christ.
Christ’s atonement enables Him to perfectly understand each of our trials, Cole told students. His sacrifice is the “essential cornerstone of our lives.”
“Through [Christ’s] atoning sacrifice we are made whole. It is a very unique and transforming experience to know and understand Christ’s gift to us,” Cole said. “He truly is our friend. We can take our troubles to Him. He can be the friend we need.”
Writer: Alexis Plowman