Recently God brought to my attention some areas that needed to be corrected. I realized I’d made some judgments against some people who didn’t meet my expectations and had to repent. While accepting God’s correction can be a bit uncomfortable, what I appreciate the most is that I have loyal friends who keep focused on the narrow road.
I don’t know where I’d be without my best friend Christy. Over the years we’ve delved deeper into our relationship with the Lord and as iron sharpens iron, made each other better moms, wives, and Christians.
We’re totally honest with each other about the junk in our lives. We know more about each others’ husbands and kids than we’ve told anyone else (and it stays between us). We’ve cried and prayed together over our husbands’ and kids’ struggles. We scold each other when we get off track. We give each other scriptures and sermon podcasts that encourage us in the areas where we are struggling. When we promise to pray for each other, we really do it; not just a passing ‘Lord, watch over my friend’, but real heartfelt, specific petitions.
The book of 1 Samuel states that Jonathan and David were linked at the soul. In a couple places the Bible speaks of their great love for each other. I heard a fantastic sermon once outlining the unique friendship between these two men, a commitment centered around God. In chapter 23 of 1 Samuel, Jonathan helped David “find strength in the Lord” and told him “Don’t be afraid” because God is bigger than his circumstances.They made a covenant before the Lord to watch over each others’ families.
Every Christian must have godly friendships like that of David and Jonathan. It may be a little scary at first, opening up to someone about all the junk in your life that God wants to clean up, but if you wish to strengthen your faith, it’s essential. Friends keeps you accountable in your growth. The Holy Spirit can speak to you through your friends. This has happened to me multiple times by several different friends.
You must develop a support system of people who won’t allow you to stay lukewarm. I’m not talking about those friends who are always at church every time it opens, or those who give you platitudes when life is tough and take your side on every issue. I’m talking a deep commitment to digging into the tough issues and supporting each other in spiritual growth. Fortunately, God has given me a few friends like this, and I’m so grateful.
What do you believe is essential in friendship?