TODAY'S WORD FOR Friday, July 24, 2020:
A state of attachment to someone by affection or esteem; close association; companionship; support; harmony; fellowship.
A friend loves at all times.
A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm.
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
Very few people today have trusted friends that will be with them through not only the good times in life but the deep valleys of hard times that one goes through. We have noticed that friendships change when circumstances change in our lives.
We developed friends when we were involved in the lives of our 6 children through the sports they played and the school functions they were involved in. Then they all moved on to college and life on their own and a new set of friends needed to be found.
Friends are lost when people move, people change jobs or they no longer share common interests.
In the book of Proverbs Solomon gives us wise words of advice to teach us how to live a godly life and how to choose our friends. Solomon gives us words of wisdom on three aspects of friendship:
1. The foundation of a true friendship in Proverbs 17:17.
2. The necessity of choosing friends wisely in Proverbs 18:24.
3. The influence friends have on a person’s life in Proverbs 13:20.
In Proverbs 17:17 he notes the foundation of a friendship is love. A true friend is a constant source of love. To love at all times requires loyalty. Friends may not always agree but loyal friends will continue to love each other. Loyal friends will be there for each other in the good times and in the bad times. A real friend will love at all times.
Many people base their friendship on what they can get out of it. These kinds of friends do not last and either you will leave them or they will leave you as soon as one sees that they cannot benefit in some way with the friendship.
Genuine friendship means being available to help in times of trouble and distress. We must consider what kind of friend we are. We cannot expect a friend to love us at all times if we are not a friend that loves at all times as the Bible encourages us to be.
In Proverbs 18:24, the writer Solomon is telling us that the person who makes friends too easily and indiscriminately does so to his own destruction. On the other hand a friend chosen wisely is more loyal than a brother. It is to our own best interests to choose our friends wisely. Friends who are true friends will want only what is best for each other. The word “friend’ here is a strong word meaning one who loves. Friendship was used in II Chronicles 20:7 to describe Abraham’s close relationship with God.
The type of friends we choose as close friends speaks volumes about us. Friends that we spend a lot of time with have a significant effect and influence on our life. Proverbs 13:20 admonishes us that, “He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffer harm.” We must choose our friends wisely.
It is of most importance that parents get to know who their children’s friends are and to make sure that they are the right kind of friends. Friendships are important to everyone, but especially to teenagers. Christian parents have a responsibility to get their children involved in church and with groups that uphold Biblical values so that their children can choose wholesome friendships.
Friendship is based on love. As Christians, Christ told us to love our neighbors as ourselves. We need to be friends to our neighbors especially be friends that are there when the needs are the greatest for our neighbor.
Abraham Lincoln said that the better part of one’s life consists of building and keeping friendships. Mark Twain once said that friendship is only purchased with friendship.
True friendship begins with the certainty that you must have in your heart that you are a friend of God. Do you communicate with Him daily? He alone can help us to be a friend that loves at all times.
Our memory verse for this week is found in Isaiah 26:3
You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You.
Guide me in my choice of friends that I will choose wisely. Give me a spirit of love and concern for all those around me that need a friend. Help me to be the right kind of friend, a friend that loves at all times, that is loyal, and that influences friends to walk with God.
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
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