Good Friends Are a Gift From God
"And the Lord God said, ‘It is not good that man should be alone,’" (Genesis 2:18, NKJV).
Don’t you love having friends? I just came from our son Eric’s last regular season basketball game. Even though they lost the game, Eric won. You might wonder how he won when they lost the game? Well, let me tell you. After the game was over he probably had a dozen friends from other schools that came to watch him play. It was so cool to see them stick around just to give him a hug and encourage him. It reminded me of a message I shared with our congregation last weekend on the five benefits of having friends. So I thought I’d share them with you:
(1) Friends love you for who you are, not for what you have or what you do.
Proverbs 17:17 says, “A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.” (NKJV) A real friend loves you when you’re up or when you’re down. They just love you for who you are, not because of your position, your power, or even because of your possessions. Win or lose, they just love you!
(2) Friends will tell you the truth even if it hurts your feelings.
Proverbs 27:6 says, “Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful,” (NKJV). Isn't it good to have friends that will shoot you straight? Friends that love you enough to tell you when your idea is dumb, or your outfit looks goofy? Good friends care enough about you to speak the truth to you in love.
(3) Friends know you well enough to give you good counsel.
Proverbs 27:9 says, “Ointment and perfume delight the heart, and the sweetness of a man’s friend gives delight by hearty counsel,” (NKJV). There is no shortage of people who want to tell you their opinions about your life. So, we need to be very careful who we let speak into our lives. But, I’ll tell you this, there is nothing like having friends who, because they really do know you, are able to give you good godly advice.
(4) Friends can help bring out the best in you.
Proverbs 27:17 says, “As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend,” (NKJV). A circle of good friends can challenge us, inspire us, believe in us, and help us to become the best we can be.
(5) Friends make you stronger, because you don’t have to go through stuff alone.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 says, “Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For it they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls. For he has no one to help him up,” (NKJV). Aren't you glad for friends who have been there for you when you've needed a hand up? Chances are that you've been that for someone else. I don’t know about you, but I’m thankful for friends who have strengthened me when I needed it.
So, let me challenge you with the same challenge I gave our congregation—how about writing a note to at least three friends today just to thank them for adding value to your life by being your friend? A few words of affirmation can go a long way to encourage your friends, and lets them know how much you appreciate them.
Say It: “Father, I thank You for the friends You have given me. I lift them up to You today and pray a special blessing over their lives. I appreciate that they are in my life and ask You Father to help me be a better friend to them. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.”
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