Proverbs 25:19 – “Confidence in an unfaithful man in time of trouble is like a bad tooth and a foot out of joint.” NKJV
Almost thirty years ago the Holy Spirit spoke to my heart as I was driving to Austin one night and said, “I want you to study and write about Covenant Friendship.” That has be a journey that I have engaged in over the past decades and each time I think I understand it fully something transpires and I find that I need to dig deeper.
Few of us have true Covenant Friends and few of us are true Covenant Friends. One of the reasons for that is ‘trust’ or the lack of it in us and others. Once when I was going through a very difficult time many people I thought were friends vanished and a handful of people were there and never faltered. One of them was Garry Smith a friend who stood with me and never required me to defend myself or give detailed explanations. On one occasion when some false accusations were hurled at me I told someone, “My real friends do not need an explanation and those that do are not my real friends.” I have found that those who require detailed explanations frequently do not believe you when you do so unless the Lord directs me to do that I do not.
Iron sharpens iron and each of us need someone or a few to whom we can be completely transparent, brutally honest, and accountable. We and they need to know that truth can be spoken and it will not jeopardize the friendship because the friendship is based on Covenant and Covenant is not based on convenience. Covenant Friendship embodies the character and characteristic of being willing to ‘die’ for the friend literally and figuratively. It means being willing to ‘share’ all you have. There are few examples in the Bible of Covenant Friendship and even fewer in life that we can learn from and I believe that is one of the reasons that God instructed me to study this. The Bible clearly reveals that a ‘three-fold cord’ is not easily broken and when we are linked to others in a Covenantal Relationship those friends become the other strands of the cord along and with the power and direction of the Holy Spirit each one draws from the strengths and shores up the weaknesses of the others. It is a powerful picture that most see only superficially and infrequently.
The question “Who Do Your Trust?” is the key to Covenant Friendship! If we have to stop and think who are real friends are they probably are not in the covenantal category. No matter your age I urge you to find someone you truly trust and allow God to develop a mutual covenantal relationship where ‘Iron sharpens Iron’ and a bond that stands the test of battle. I have a lot of people I call and see as friends. I have a number that are close friends. I have a few that I know I can go to battle with and they will be there until the storm passes by. They speak into my life and I speak into theirs.
We should all carefully define our friendships and guard them as priceless treasures. If we place our confidence in an “unfaithful” person in time of need or difficulty the results are painful. Proverbs 17:17 declares, “A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.” I treasure friends as rare jewels. I have different levels of friendships and some called friends are little more than casual acquaintances but all valuable. However, those I know are Covenant Friends never give me cause to wonder if they are there. I do not have to see them or hear them, they are there! Our greatest friend, Jesus NEVER leaves nor forsakes.
God bless you as you enjoy this wonderful day in Christ!