TEXT: Proverbs 18:24
A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.
Today the Lord highlights the issue of friendship and relationship. Every relationship comes with a responsibility. Many times, the responsibility to a relationship is conformity. This is why we must be very careful the type of relationships we enter into. We must understand the cost of every relationship and make good ones.
The demands of a relationship will eventually make or mare us. Solomon was a godly man once. But his relationship with many women led him astray and his wisdom became like foolishness. This was the testimony about him:
“But king Solomon loved many strange women…of the nations concerning which the LORD said unto the children of Israel, Ye shall not go in to them, neither shall they come in unto you: for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods: Solomon clave unto these in love… his wives turned away his heart after other gods: and his heart was not perfect with the LORD his God” (1Kings 11:1,2&4)
Soon the lovely king who was named Jedidiah (the beloved of God) (1Sam. 12:25-25) began to follow his numerous wives to the temple of their gods. You may never think he will do that. But he did. Be not deceived ….”Do not have friends who are bad. They will make you do the bad things that they do“.(1Cor 15:33 Easy English Bible). The African proverbs that “when a leaf stays long enough with soap, it will become soap itself” is herein confirmed.
Another rendition of our Text goes thus:
He that maketh many friends doeth it to his own destruction; But there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.
–American Standard Version
There are friends who may be a man’s destruction, but there is a lover who keeps nearer than a brother.
-Bible in Basic English
Thus indiscriminate and unthoughtful establishment of relationship may be disastrous. But then, true and good relationship can be very invaluable. there is a friend that sticks closer than a brother. There are friends that are loyal and can improve a man’s life. these are the iron that sharpens iron. These are people whose countenance sharpen yours. (Prov. 27:17) To such friends, reciprocity and faithfulness is non negotiable. Good news, we have such a friend in Jesus who bore our sins and died for us. He is ready to do anything for us. He says I no longer call you servants but friends. He’d reveal anything to us. Let us reciprocate His friendship by faithfully obeying His command to love our brethren as He has loved us (John 15:14-15)
Thank God for all the relationship that has benefited you
Ask God to separate you from unfriendly friends, wrong associations and those unprofitable relationship that add no value to your life
Pray that God help you make valuable relationships
Pray for grace of faithfulness and reciprocity to valuable friends
Ask for grace to reciprocate Jesus’ friendship with obedience to His commandment of love
Pray for the church and the nation
Pray for me too.