As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.
What about our friendships? When I was a strung out, drug addled convict, in and out of prison and armed only with a pistol and a broken decision maker I didn't really have many friends. Well, I had one friend. He is presently doing life in prison and he is still my friend. I pray for his salvation every day and I write to him regularly. But back in the day we were so tight that we could hear each other thinking. We definitely sharpened each other, but we sharpened each other for all the wrong things. We were a force, nothing could stand against us but we were criminals plain and simple. Oh, how I wish we had been Christians in ministry together! As we go through life we will have many acquaintances but how many true friends will we have? My grandmother used to say, “If when you die you had one true friend you were doin’ pretty darn good.” I think we need to be careful in who we give title friend to. Not so much that they might be a disappointment to us, but are we prepared to truly be a friend to that person? Jesus gives a description of friendship and what it requires in John 15:13-15,
Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one's life for his friends. 14 You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you.
Three essential elements to true friendship are on display here. The first is sacrifice; Greater love has no
one than this, than to lay down one's life for his friends. If I am going to be a friend then I had better be prepared to sacrifice for that friendship. The second thing is submission; You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. Friends must be willing toplay second fiddle, to not be the center of the relationship, to take instruction lovingly. The third thing is disclosure; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. Friends are open and honest with each other, they do not conceal things and when they hear from God they share what they have heard. Finally, Proverbs 18:24 says, A man who has friends must himself be friendly, If I am going to have a friend then I need to be a friend.
“Lord, today make my heart, “friendly”, Give me a purity in my heart and my mind to be a true friend, to be willing to be sacrificial, submissive, and open to disclosure. Mostly give me a passion for my friendship with You that I might share that with my friends and bring light into their lives, amen.”