“A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity” (Proverbs 17:17). What a joy it is to have a friend, one we can confide and trust in, receive help and encouragement from, one who knows and loves us just as we are. To have a friend walk beside us in the darkest times is a great blessing.
But friendship, like all things in this fallen world, is broken. Because of sin, we have conflicts with others. We seek our own way. We hurt and betray one another. We know what it is like to have a friend fail us and let us down. We’ve probably had friends betray our confidences with others. Perhaps we’ve even had friends turn their backs and reject us. Certainly we know what it’s like when close friends from the past fade farther away through time and distance. Some of us may know the heartache of losing a friend through death.
As a result, it can be easy to grow cynical about friendship. We can be distrusting and cautious. We might find relationships online or through social media to be more appealing than flesh and blood friendships. We may keep the relationships we do have at a distance, never trusting enough to share what’s really going on in our heart. And some may give up on friendship altogether, preferring to handle life on our own...
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