A Friend Closer than a Brother……

“A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother”  Proverbs 18:24

Who are your closest friends?

Good friends are hard to come by in a world of superficial acquaintances and relationships.

I like how the Message Paraphrase Bible reads this passage: “Friends come, and friends go, but a true friend sticks by you like family”

Open, honest, supportive, and loving relationships don’t happen by accident, they require a committed effort and desire to build through the times and seasons of life.

I am fortunate to have several what I call close friends.

But what is a close friend anyway?  According to today’s passage a friend is one who ‘sticks closer than a brother’ ‘sticks by you like family;

I hope we can all say that we have at least one friend like this.  You know;  the kind of friend who:

  • Is always ready to listen when you have too much to say, that friend is patient.
  • Has a way of leaving you encouraged.  That friend is a helper.
  • Will not leave you without a word of wisdom from God’s Word.
  • Will join with you in prayer.

But what if you don’t have a friend that  ‘sticks closer than a brother~ sticks by you like family’?  No problem!  Read the King James Version of this passage: ‘A man that hath friends must show himself friendly’

Being friendly could be seen as:

  • Neighborly
  • Kind
  • Amiable
  • Cordial
  • Affectionate
  • Kind hearted
  • Helpful
  • Supportive
  • Is one who shows no hostility.

So what are the characteristics of one who is ‘unfriendly’?

  • Distant
  • Shows no emotion
  • Chilly
  • Combative
  • Competitive
  • Disagreeable
  • Grouchy
  • Grudging
  • Hateful

Face it, we’ve all had days where one or more of the examples in the second group has manifested itself to us and especially those around us.   And that leads us to the last Word from our Bible in Proverbs that teaches us how to maintain a friendly outlook towards others around us.

1.  Proverbs 15:13~ “A merry heart makes a cheerful face, but by sorrow of heart the spirit is broken.

2.  Proverbs 17:22 ~ “A merry heart does good like a medicine, but a broken spirit dries the bones.”

When you decide either to become a friend, or to have friend, these simple Proverbs apply.  There’s an old adage that says ‘to have a friend is to be a friend”

Being a friend is not always as easy as it looks.  Being a friend is going to require some effort on both sides, there will be parts of people who you just don’t like. That’s okay, because when everything is all said and done, you are not in this alone.  Remember this God’s counsel to us.  Wherever He leads us, He equips us.  We always have Him as our help.

The greatest friend we have is Jesus.

“But I have called you friends” John 15:15

No greater love than this, that a man lay down his life for a friend John 15:13

But commends His love towards us that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8

Maybe you need help in becoming a friend or having a friend in the family of Christ.  I know when I first came to know the Lord, after I was saved, I had a special love given to me by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.  I was compelled by Him to learn to love the brethren.    He moved me to get involved in church activities. It made a huge difference for me to climb out of my shell.

Before I came to the Lord I was considered in the world as an ‘introvert’. Shy, and not really comfortable around people.  When I was born again, that all changed, I became this opposite, I became more like an “extrovert”.  I enjoy being around people, especially in times of fellowship.   If that’s you, I suggest some of these tips. Start out by:

  • Volunteering at church. (Even if you’re on staff)going o

  • Consider going on a short term Mission trip.

  • Visit the elderly at Convalescent Homes.

  • Join a G.A.P. Prayer group here at church.

  • Join the Once A Month Healing and Prayer Team at church, praying with the sick.

  • These are all ways that bond or become the glue of a lasting friendship.  There’s nothing like working side by side with people who you don’t know and then by working together form this close friendship.
  • Ask the Lord to lead you to close friends in His family. Minister to and serve those around you. Listen to their requests, faithfully upholding them in prayer.

    Spend time in Christian service with other servant believers.

     

  • Companions are easy to find, but can be unreliable. Developing a Christian friend is an investment of effort and time, but they are friends with whom we will share forever.

    “In doubtful times the genuine friend is known.”

“A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother”  Proverbs 18:24

‘ Until then, see you then, see you around the bend, or up in the air!”

Have a listen to this great uplifitng song!

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2 Responses to A Friend Closer than a Brother……

  1. John says:

    The Lord bless you and keep you, The Lord make His face shine upon you, and be gracious to you, The Lord lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace…Num 7:24-26

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