When you have found a good friend, you have truly found a treasure. They are keepsakes that keep on giving. A good friendship can weather any storm and believe me, they will come. In fact, it has been through the storms of life that I have learned who my real friends are. They are the ones who stuck with me, who helped to see me through. They are the ones who encouraged me and yes, even at times disagreed with me.
Sometimes we think that a good friend is one who will always tell us what we want to hear. We think a friend will never disappoint us. But any relationship in life, be it marriage or in parenting, we know the reality. People are people and they will let us down. Our husbands, our children and yes, even our friends will let us down. It’s up to us what we do with those disappointments. Will we allow them to mold and shape us? Will we allow them to cause correction in our character?
Proverbs 27:17 says that as iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. A good friend will love you, be dependable and loyal but a good friend will also sharpen you. Being sharpened hurts! It’s tempting to try and escape the pain, to push away what is causing that pain. Yet God uses our friends to challenge us. He uses friendship to sometimes reflect what is really in our hearts—what needs to be changed.
There is an Arabian proverb that I really like. It says: A friend is one to whom one may pour out the contents of one’s heart, chaff and grain together, knowing that the gentlest of hands will take and sift it, keep what is worth keeping and with a breath of kindness blow the rest away. The good, the bad and the ugly…you get it all when you have a real friendship. It all comes out and only a good friend will stand by your side to carefully sift away those shortcomings and faults. In the end, she blows away the impurities and chooses to dwell on the harvest of good within you.
If you have a friendship like this, treasure it and hold onto it! Don’t let it go. Don’t let a foolish misunderstanding or disagreement stand in the way of what God wants to use in your life. Allow God to work through your friendships to make you into the person that God desires you to be!