Two are better than one,
because they have a good return for their labor:
If either of them falls down,
one can help the other up. Ecclesiastes 4:9-10a NIV
As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17 NIV
Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.” 1 Corinthians 15:33 NIV
After Job had prayed for his friends, the Lord restored his fortunes and gave him twice as much as he had before. Job 42:10 NIV
Have you ever found yourself in a bind that you couldn’t fix by yourself, but you knew without a doubt there was at least one person you could call and they would be there no matter what? Do you have someone you can be completely honest and vulnerable with without fear of judgment or ridicule? Is there someone in your life who loves you enough to tell you the hard truth when nobody else will? These are things that a real friend who truly loves you will do without hesitation.
Ecclesiastes 4:9a;10a says, “Two are better than one… If either of them falls down, one can help the other up.” Jesus showed us this example over and over in the Bible. When Jesus encountered someone who was in trouble or needed help, He didn’t belittle or ridicule them. He offered to help them out of love. He also prayed for them, and encouraged them to do what was necessary to avoid those pitfalls and become better. This is a good way to assess your friends, but also your own friendliness.
Proverbs 27:17 says, “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” Do the people you call friends strengthen you and motivate you to be a better person or do they help you justify poor decision making and reckless behavior? Do you encourage growth, or enable stagnation? A real friend wants to see you evolve and get better because they love you, and they are willing to do whatever is within their ability to assist you.
1 Corinthians 15:33 says, “Do not be misled, bad company corrupts good character.” Our friends influence who we are, how we act and what we believe. Are your friends changing you for better or worse? How do you influence your friends?
Finally, Job 42:10 says, “After Job had prayed for his friends, the Lord restored his fortunes and gave him twice as much as he had before.” Loving and considerate friends don’t stop praying for you, encouraging you, and celebrating your elevation just because they may be in the midst of a storm. Loving, considerate, and faith filled friends understand that the same God who elevated you can elevate them too! If I clap for my friend even though I’m in the midst of a storm at this particular moment, God is pleased and my friend is encouraged and showered with love.
Real genuine friendship is not for the selfish.
God knew our journey through life wouldn’t be easy, so he gave us each other. Then He became a human example of how to love and how to be a friend. Love is an action word! It is not enough to simply say it. How do you show it so that the people you call friends (family too) can feel it and know that it is real?
The value of true, genuine friendship is greater than money or material things, and it is a blessing from God himself. The Bible instructs us to be a friend to others. Take the time today to express your love and appreciation to your real friends.
Do you express love in your friendships like you do with your family or significant other? Why or why not? How do you think the expression of love or the lack of expression impacts you and those around you?
Father God, help us to study Your example to learn how to be more like You. Help us to be kind, loving, forgiving, generous, and encouraging towards one another. May all of our friendships grow to be healthy, positive, uplifting, and pleasing to You. Thank You for being a friend who sticks closer than a brother. We love You Lord.