A Friend Who Loves
Read Proverbs 17:17a
A friend loves at all times…
How can you be a friend that loves all the time?
Loving at ALL times. That sounds like a tall order! I don’t know about you, but if I’m being honest, I have sometimes missed the mark when it comes to loving my friends.
What does it mean to love our friends at all times? It means to love them when they are successful, and everything is going well. We celebrate their achievements, and we are happy for them when they are experiencing blessings. But, it also means loving them when the going gets rough, and life gets messy. It means sitting with them in their pain and heartache and helping to meet their needs. The apostle Paul put it this way in Romans 12:15. He said, “Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.”
If we are looking for an example of a best friend, we do not need to look any farther than Jesus Himself. He met His friends’ physical needs when he healed the sick, fed the hungry, and even raised the dead. When His friend Lazarus died, Jesus comforted his sisters and wept with them. He preached good news and hope to people who were desperate for it. Jesus even offers forgiveness to those who have wronged him. And He did all of these things at great personal cost. Jesus put us first, took what we deserved upon Himself, and laid down His life for us.
In John 15:13, Jesus said, “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.” We can follow His example to love our friends well. We can put others first, give sacrificially, and be a steadfast friend. We can offer our friends the hope of the Gospel when they desperately need an encouraging word. We can even forgive our friends when we’ve been wronged by them.
Will we love as perfectly as Jesus did? No. But by His grace, through His strength, and in His example, we can learn to love our friends well.
Dear Lord, help me to love those around me as you love me. Thank you for loving me at all times. Amen.