It is the best and truest friend who honestly tells us the truth about ourselves even when he knows we shall not like it. False friends are the ones who hide such truth from us and do so in order to remain in our favor. R.C.H. Lenski
A reproof enters more into a wise man than an hundred stripes into a fool. Proverbs 17:10
Several years ago a friend asked me out for coffee. She sat across from me and shared some things that she had noticed in me lately. Changes. Changes that concerned her. I was becoming someone she knew I didn’t want to be, someone that God did not intend me to be.
It was hard to sit and listen. Everything in me wanted to defend myself, to explain and perhaps even justify my behavior. It’s been hard, she just didn’t understand. She didn’t understand the losses and the pain I’ve experienced recently. The heartbreak, hurt and even betrayal. But I remained quiet.
His gentle Spirit reminded me that this, regardless of how hurtful, was filtered through His hands. This, regardless of motives or attitudes, truth spoken into our lives is still love.
His Spirit reminded me of Ephesians 4: 14-16 which says, “As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming ;but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.”
I want to grow up in all aspects of Christ.
Growing means to accept truth spoken into our lives no matter where it comes from.
Growing up means I can take what is said before the Lord and evaluate it’s truthfulness.
Growing up means I can see that truth spoken into my life is love. A love that does not want to leave me where I am.
Growing up means that I can receive a reproof, or criticism in order for it to be used in my life through the Spirit.
I welcome the wounds of a friend. Sadly so few are willing to hold one another accountable. We are afraid of hurt feelings or being called judgmental. But wouldn’t a true friend be willing to risk that in order to save a life?
Zechariah 8:16 says, 'These are the things which you should do: speak the truth to one another; judge with truth and judgment for peace in your gates.
And Ephesians 4:25 says, “Therefore, laying aside falsehood, SPEAK TRUTH EACH ONE of you WITH HIS NEIGHBOR, for we are members of one another. “
This is the kind of friend I desire. I desire to have a true friend that will speak the hard truth, the necessary truth into my life in order to help me grow.
What about you?
Do you currently have a friend like this? If not, pray for one!