How finding an honest community can lead you closer to Christ
Regardless of whether you have several friends or only a few close ones, trust is the foundation of a good friendship. Building and maintaining trust in a relationship requires a conscious effort to love sacrificially and to be honest. We all can benefit from a friend who sticks by our side but also isn’t afraid to say the hard things that we sometimes need to hear. Friends like these are invaluable because they help shape our character and lead us closer to Christ.
The Bible has a lot to say about friendship. First, we learn in John 15:13 that “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” Jesus is the perfect example of such a friend. His love for us led him to the cross where he demonstrated that he would go to any length for the ones he cares for. We also learn in Scripture that friends are to speak the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15). Again, Christ is the prime example of this. Throughout his earthly ministry Jesus embodied sacrificial love and yet never shied away from speaking the truth in a clear and compelling way.
The Bible also talks about honest friendship in Proverbs 27:5-6 saying, “Better is open rebuke, than hidden love. Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses.” In other words, the friend who is willing to be honest with us when it isn’t easy is the one we can count on, not the friend who only tells us what we want to hear.
It’s clear from Scripture that we should love our friends deeply, and such a love will lead us to put them first and always be honest. These types of friendships need to be carefully cultivated and are best achieved when both parties are striving towards Christ’s example. Building trust is crucial, and can take time, but it is well worth the effort.
Ask yourself today what type of friend are you? Also consider what type of friends you attract. A true friend will stand by your side and help you become a better person in a loving and honest way. They will challenge you when you are wrong and support you when you are right and in both circumstances show you Christ’s love.
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