You Know Who Your Friends Are When …
Like a bad tooth or a lame foot, is reliance on the unfaithful in times of trouble. Like one who takes away a garment on a cold day, or like vinegar poured on soda, is one who sings songs to a heavy heart. (Proverbs 25:19-20)
The current circumstances have offered ample opportunity for people to show their true colours. Whether is has been a health issue, or financial strain, many people have fallen into hardship during these months of social distancing and the shutdown of our economy. It’s a time when many of us have seen who our true friends are; people who stick with us through the good times and the bad.
True friends show their worth when they come to our aid, or bring a word of encouragement that helps us focus on the One who meets our greatest needs. Solomon is quick to identify these people.
Like the coolness of snow at harvest time is a trustworthy messenger to those who send him; he refreshes the spirit of his masters. (Prov. 25:14)
A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in setting of silver. (Prov. 25:12)
Like cold water to a weary soul is good news from a distant land. (Prov. 25:25)
We are given the opportunity during these days to demonstrate the kind of a friend we are. The Scriptures speak of this in many places, reminding us that it is God’s love, given freely to us, that He expects to give to others:
We love because he first loved us. (1 John 4:19)
A friends loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity. (Prov. 17:17)
My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. (John 15:12-13)
Like so many other things in the Scriptures, we are given bad examples as a warning, not to justify a pity-party. The issue is never, “who has come to help me,” but rather, “who have I reached out to and shown my true friendship?”