Do You Really KNOW Who Your Friends Are?

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You would think by now, since I’m 40 years old, that I’d have figured out this thing called “Friendship.” Perhaps I have so many hang-ups and insecurities when it comes to others because I still have that “middle school girl friendship mindset” at times. You may recognize it as, “I’ll be your friend if you don’t hang out with that other person,” or “I won’t be your friend because you talked to her.” Girl friendships while growing up are unpredictable and difficult. Nerve wracking. And I’ve learned to NEVER put girls together in groups of 3’s. (That can be disastrous in the classroom!) Girls really can be mean to each other.

I love how God teaches His children. And this weekend He’s been teaching me about my friends. It began with this:

“Let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.” ~ Hebrews 10:24-25

It’s that word for “consider how” that got my mind thinking. It means to “fix your attention on someone else.” It’s not a selfish thing. It’s placing others before your own desires. It’s an intentionality. It’s love without strings.

You can probably count the people who treat you this way on one hand. Blessed is the man, or woman, who has more than five!

As Christians we are to love and encourage others, all people. However, the Bible does give us some advice that we must heed when it comes to those we allow in our close circle of friends.

“Spiritual maturity means preferring time with the Lord over negative influences that stunt our growth or cause us to stumble. As we walk in step with Him and seek to align our hearts with His, the result is that we seek fellowship with believers who also reflect godly qualities and strive to know Him more. The weightiness of this decision is seen in Proverbs 12:26, which says, ‘The righteous should choose his friends carefully, for the way of the wicked leads them astray.'”

This doesn’t mean isolate ourselves from unbelievers, or even believers who are young in the faith. No, we are to teach, encourage, and cheer them on to spiritual maturity. But we do need to be wise when it comes to who we ask advice of, or listen to, about meaty spiritual issues and struggles. I want to be sure that the person I speak with is willing to tell me the truth in love because he or she really has MY best interests at heart. And if someone were to come to me seeking a deeper friendship in this manner, I would hope that I would respond in kind.

Life is too short to be stuck in the “middle school mentality” of friendship. We really need to spur each other on to spiritual maturity. I don’t want to be stuck in mediocrity. God is continuing to reveal to me those who are willing to consider how to stimulate me to love and good deeds. And they aren’t necessarily the people who I thought they’d be.

“He who walks with wise men will be wise, but the companion of fools will be destroyed.” ~ Proverbs 13:20

Second quote from: A Jane Austen Devotional by Steffany Woolsey, pg.183


Do You Really KNOW Who Your Friends Are? — 8 Comments

  1. I wish I didn’t know exactly what you mean, but I do! I totally get it. I have a hard time trusting people after being hurt over and over. What I dislike the most is how the hurt has caused me to be a little “colder”, less likely to jump up and “be there” for others. It’s something that I feel like God is working to heal in me though… but it’s a process. Takes time. One thing I’m learning is that I don’t have to trust the people, but I do have to trust in God to watch over me and take care of me in the end of it all. Whatever good I do for someone, I do for Him first and look to Him to “repay the kindness” instead of looking for the favor returned by the people. That way I can let go and not feel hurt when I’m in need and they’re no where to be found – again lol. 🙂 Ya know?

    • I find I have a hard time trusting the friends I have. Those whom I KNOW care a lot for me…but I think in the back of my mind that they don’t really care. I have to stop listening to the lies and look at the truth before me.

  2. Brandon and I have been talking a lot lately about the friends we keep and whether or not they are healthy for us. We are finding it difficult for us to find friends out own age. It seems like people in their 40’s and up are more at our level. We are not trying to isolate ourselves but we don’t have time for drama either!

    • It is hard. I feel I don’t fit in with certain groups of ladies either. I’m 40, but I have young kids. So I don’t really fit in with those my age b/c they have older kids. And then I don’t fit in with those with younger children like mine because I’ve seen a little more of the world. I’ve decided to just pray. It’s been Y.E.A.R.S….since I’ve had a really close female friend. I’m still praying for her. 🙂

Thoughts? Please share!