Over the years, intimate friendship has always been tough for me. Maybe because I’m selfish. Maybe because I’m critical. Maybe because I can be too direct and intimidating. Maybe because I’m too busy, and genuine friendship takes work.
So, today, as I was reading James, I was captured by James 4:4
You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.James 4:4 ESV
Being friends with the world is easy. The world encourages me to be selfish and critical. The world is waiting for me every time I pick up my phone and veg out on the couch, or pick up a big slice of “poor me pie.”
But, God is a better friend than the world can ever be. God listens to me at all hours of the day or night. He’s never too busy. He’s never distracted. He never ignores my call. He’s never too tired.
God tells me what I need to hear, not only what I want to hear. God gives me wise counsel filled with His loving grace and mercy. God is patient with me. God knows my weakness and still loves me.
The world woos us, pretending to love us, calling to us to come and be filled, but really it is only speaking empty lies and deceit. When I’m chasing after the world, I’m turning my back on the lover of my soul, Jesus, my Savior and Shepherd who gave up His life in my place.
If you’re looking for a true friend, look up.
A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
Proverbs 18:24 ESV
A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.
Proverbs 17:17 ESV
Faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy.
Proverbs 27:6 ESV
No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.
Matthew 6:24 ESV
Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.
John 15:13 ESV
Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.
Revelation 3:20 ESV
The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.
Revelation 22:17 ESV