Have your close friends ever disappointed, betrayed, neglected, or even gossiped about you? Maybe they’ve even abandoned you and you don’t even understand their reasons. It hurts, doesn’t it?
In this day and age, it seems that you can’t even gently suggest to someone that there is Biblical err in their thoughts, or behaviors. Ephesians 4:32 teaches us “to speak the truth in love” and when you speak truth to an erring friend, their defense is just to drop you like a hot potato. Or, their rebuttal is to throw Matthew 7:1 in your face. “Judge not, lest ye be judged.” You know, I’m O.K. with that because Jesus in that statement condemns the kind of judgement that comes from a hypocritical and unkind spirit. So, if you and I are doing the same thing, and I criticize you for doing what I’m doing, then I am indeed being a hypocrite. On the other hand, Jesus gives us a mind and a heart to discern right from wrong. Love compels us, as Christians to be truth speakers. Notice I did not say that we are to be one who judges others….simply one who speaks Biblical truth in love.
Am I without fault in my relationships with friends? Which one of us is not?
Over the years, friends have drifted into and out of my life. Ecclesiastes tells us that there is a time and season for everything. Of all those people, there are probably only two that I have pushed out of my circle of friends….and that is after I tried to reach out to them but failed. Others have chosen to move out of my circle and, even though we remain acquaintances, the original bond over time has simply deteriorated.
So what’s my advice about friends? Love everybody and if they don’t love you back….love them anyway! There is Biblical truth again----from John 15:12, “Love one another as I have loved you.”
Thank you, Jesus for all the friends you have placed in my life!
© 2019 Allan Redenius, All Rights Reserved
Allan Redenius is the Pastor of First Covenant Church in Fort Dodge, Iowa. This blog reflects his love for Our Lord Jesus Christ, his whimsical sense of humor and his approach to life.