Friendship is truly a wonderful gift. Someone has well said that the best way to have friends is to be one, and this is something that all of us can do. The book of Proverbs offers several wise principles for cultivating friendship with others, one of which is found in this verse. There is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. Have you ever thought about what it means to be a friendly person? The Bible says that the Pharisees accused Jesus of being a ‘friend of sinners.’ Praise God that He is, or we would have no hope of salvation! To be a friendly person, let me give you a few practical suggestions to keep in mind.
1–Spend time with Jesus, the Friend of sinners, each and every day. The love that we are to have for others comes only through the love of God at work in our lives. The apostle John says that the result of walking in the light as He is in the light is fellowship with our bothers and sisters. As we spend time with Christ, we become more like Christ.
2–Avoid the word “me.” To be a friend to others is to genuinely be interested in them. Selfishness is destructive to our relationships. When you are with others, ask them about their day, their family, and their struggles.
3–Don’t wear your feelings on your sleeve. If you are a person who is easily offended, then friendship with others will be difficult for you. People are not perfect. They will say and do things that you may not always like. Don’t take it personal. Proverbs 12:16 says, “The prudent ignore an insult.”
4–Be optimistic rather than pessimistic. There is something about optimistic people that is attractive and winsome. No one wants to be around the person who is always complaining about something. Joy is contagious.
5–Go the extra mile. As someone who has experienced the grace of God through Christ, also be a man or woman who extends grace. Be there for others in their time of crisis. You may just find yourself in a similar situation and in need of a friend!
How can you truly be a friend to someone today?
For more, read Luke 15:1-32