Whoever covers an offense seeks love, but he who repeats a matter separates close friends. (Proverbs 17:9 ESV) Friendships matter to God.
Women and Men
I may not be politically correct, but from my observations, women seem to be better than men at keeping friendships for a lifetime. I know some men can do this, but I think more women succeed in long-term bonds.
I’ve personally watched this with my sister, my wife, and others. As an example, my sister is older than me (sorry Sis), yet she is still deeply connected to several friends from her high school days, so is my wife. As for me, I have no friends from high school.
Cultivating Lifelong Friendships
Cultivating long-term friendships is a Godly characteristic, and therefore something we all should strive to accomplish. Jesus gave us the promise that “For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them. (Matthew 18:20) “When you have deep friendships, you can gather together; powerful prayers come from these gatherings.
We have God’s wisdom from Ecclesiastes 4:12: And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.
Yet how many friendships have been lost over a single event? Perhaps your friend lied to you, chose someone else to go to a concert, failed to show up for dinner. Maybe it was you that let a friend down. “Whoever covers an offense seeks love.” Seek to restore lost friendships.
There’s great value in friendships, and the longer the bond, the higher the value and the greater your reward. However, if your friend changes and becomes unreliable, untrustworthy, worldly, those repeated offenses can break a friendship. This change applies to us as well as others. Priority and transparency are key ingredients to maintaining friendships.
Friendships With Christians
God desires us to have deep, long-lasting friendships with a few Christians, for what do believers have in common with unbelievers? As Paul wrote in Galatians 6:10, “So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.” We should prioritize our brothers and sisters while not neglecting anyone.
I pray that you will strengthen your friendships, especially the ones that have kept on the back burner of your life.