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Monday, July 18, 2022

THE VALUE OF GODLY FRIENDSHIPS and The Best Kept Secret: Your Greatest Discovery

 by Creflo Dollar |

Good friends enrich our lives. We’ve all had times when we’ve suffered disappointments or loss and drew strength from loyal friends who came to support and encourage us. These people, who remain faithful through good and bad, are to be treasured. In light of this, it’s extremely important that we’re deliberate and intentional in establishing godly relationships.

There are plenty of people in the world, but not all of them are suitable to be called our close friends. Only a select few, those who accept us with all our imperfections, can be allowed into our inner circle. Spiritually, there’s great danger in choosing the wrong friends; spending time with people who hide ill intentions can be disastrous for us. So stop fooling yourselves! Evil companions will corrupt good morals and character” (1 Corinthians 15:33, TPT).

Who we hang around with influences us tremendously, for either good or bad. The relationships we foster can either build us up and help us reach our potential or tear down our sense of self-worth and destroy any positive self-image we have. Faithful friends are gifts from God; He therefore needs to be present in all our friendships. Sweet friendships refresh the soul and awaken our hearts with joy, for good friends are like the anointing oil that yields the fragrant incense of God’s presence” (Proverbs 27:9, TPT).

We’ve all met people who pretend to be our friends but whose motives are suspect. There are plenty of people like that in the world; associating with them can drain the joy out of our lives and leave us wondering why we feel so negative after being with them. Individuals like this can be traps for our emotional health and well-being. True friends always have our best interest at heart, and tell us the truth in love. You can trust a friend who wounds you with his honesty, but your enemy’s pretended flattery comes from insincerity” (Proverbs 27:6, TPT).

We must also be aware of how anger affects a friendship. This emotion can lead to strife and bickering, and eventually destroy a perfectly good relationship. When we’re influenced by someone like this, their anger negatively affects our emotional outlook. This should be a red flag for us. Don’t befriend angry people or associate with hot-tempered people, or you will learn to be like them and endanger your soul” (Proverbs 22:24, 25, NLT).

When selecting who gets to be our friend, it’s important to be able to recognize and weed out the ones who judge us for not being perfect. Some people need to stay acquaintances in our outer circle because they have character issues. We need to be picky who we open ourselves up to and become vulnerable with. Good friends are non-judgmental; they accept us the way we are and help us along our God-given path. He that covereth a transgression seeketh love; but he that repeateth a matter separateth very friends” (Proverbs 17:9).

Good friendships stand the test of time. God sends some people into our lives for a brief season; He sends others to walk with us through the years, ministering to us and encouraging us in tough times by their very presence. These are the people He can work through to show us His love and kindness. Recognizing the ones He has put in our path, and nourishing those relationships, makes life sweet.

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