The Friendship Factor (1033)
One of the basic needs and longings of our lives is for a true friend.
There are acquaintances, whom we learn from and have fun with on the shores of life, yet it the friendship never goes beyond the coast. There are fair weather friends, who will agree to set sail, but jump ship the moment the seas of life get rocky.
And then there are friends…the ones who stay in the calm and in the storm. These friends are rare. But they are of great value, and are worth the find.
The Bible places a great emphasis upon friends, but it also encourages us to possess a much higher standard on friendships than we think. We are not to have too many of them. They are costly. We are to consider friendships as an investment. We invest time, energy, prayers, and emotion into people. We cannot fully invest in more than we can maintain.
Jesus loved many people in his time on earth. He made good acquaintances, but he regularly invested himself in his 12 disciples. Of those 12, there was an inner circle: Peter, James and John. And of them, he was closest with John. We see that in his humanity, Jesus needed a friend, and He showed us the virtues of a true friend.
A friend is selfless. He loves, not because he needs something from you. He just does.
A friend is sacrificial. He carries your sorrows on his own back.
A friend sanctifies. He keeps you sharp.
How do we find a friend like this? If you want a friend, be a friend. You want love? Give love.
Renowned pastor and teacher, Adrian Rogers said it this way, “I went out to find a friend and could not find one there. I went out to be a friend and friends were everywhere.”
Apply it to your life
Today is a good day for a quality check of your friendship factor. The test of a good friendship is this: am I a better person because of my friends? Which friendships in your life bring you closer to Jesus? Are there any toxic friendships that need to be cut off? Pray carefully through each investment in your life, and ask God for the wisdom to maintain the relationships in your life with grace and understanding.