A friend loves at all times,
and a brother is born for a time of adversity.
Proverbs 17:17 (NIV)
Everybody is not your friend! No matter your age, income, education, or experience, life has taught you some valuable lessons on friendships. Life has taught you that friends fall into four categories.
Some friends are fickle; you never truly know who they are because they are forever changing on you and demonstrating their unreliability. Secondly, some friends are flaky; not only are they unreliable, but they are also never there when “you” need them. You are there for them, but when it’s your turn, they don’t reciprocate. Thirdly, there are false friends; they act like friends, but their actions are always against you, and never for you. Finally, there are faithful friends; these are the friends Solomon speaks of in our text.
Faithful friends are those who love you in spite of you, they love you unconditionally. Faithful friends love you when you’re right, and they still love you when you’re wrong. They encourage you, support you, listen to you, love you, counsel you, critique you, and never criticize you; they love you in spite of you. Faithful friends are just that, faithful! They are in your corner, celebrating you and pushing you to become all that God wants you to be. Beloved, they love you at all times, and in a like exchange, you should love them because that’s what real friends do.
So the next time life knocks the wind out of you, and you find yourself facing a time of adversity, look around and see who’s there because adversity shifts faithful friends to family members.
If you have a faithful friend, thank God for them, because they are not easily found. Pray for them, appreciate them, send them a text today, and tell them “thank you for being a faithful friend.”
Prayer: Lord, help me be the kind of friend you are to me to those who you’ve sent into my life. Thank you for being a friend that sticks closer than a brother.