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Rules of Friendship

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RULES OF FRIENDSHIP.

‘And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking unto Saul that the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.
And Saul took him that day, and would let him go no more home to his father's house. Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul.
And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle'. (1 Samuel 8:-1-4)
Each friend represent a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born yet there are rules guiding and guarding friendship. Ignorant of these rules can lead to a wrong choice of friend and jeopardize the future of the people involved. Life is all about rules and we must not forget that the best way to useless the law is to obey it to the letter. I will however expose you to some of the penitent rules guiding friendship.

A GOOD FRIEND IS FAITHFUL
Fair weather friends are numerous, and the book of Proverbs in the Bible clarifies this as stated in (Pro. 14:20; 19:4, 6, 7). Nevertheless, a true friend is a person who is still there even when the going gets tough. The best time to know those who are your real friends is when you are going through hard times in life. Despite the challenges Jesus faced, Peter, though he denied Jesus in between, was there with him. True friends are faithful. I said they are full of faith and their faith is capable of pulling you out of every mess. 'A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity' (Pro 17:17).
David never forgot the good things his friend Jonathan did to him. As a faithful friend, he showed mercy to Mephiboshet, an offspring of Saul for Jonathan's sake. That is a faithful friend. To be faithful as a friend is to be trust worthy. Can your friends trust you? How do you react to your friend when they are in hardship? When you are faithful to your friends with your heart, you will definitely be fruitful on the earth 'A man of many friends comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother' (Pro 18:24).
'Do not forsake your own friend or your father's friend, and do not go to your brother's house in the day of your calamity; better is a neighbor who is near than a brother far away' (Pro 27:10).

A GOOD FRIEND REBUKES US WHEN NECESSARY.

There are things which may need to be said to a friend that are not easy to say. I am disappointed by the sentimentalism that pervades our friendships so that we flatter our friends when we need to frankly rebuke them. A true friend is the one who is honest enough to tell us what we need to hear, rather than what we want to hear. 'A man who flatters his neighbor is spreading a net for his steps' (Pro 29:5).
If you cannot be corrected by a friend, you cannot be connected either. Those true friends that will actually connect us are the ones that will truly and sincerely rebuke us. To be connected is to be corrected. Genuine connection is as a result of genuine correction. 'Better is open rebuke than love that is concealed. Faithful are the wounds of a friend, But deceitful are the kisses of an enemy' (Pro 27:5-6).
Why is it, then, that we seem to think that a wife or fiancée should never criticize her husband or fiancé? Is it not better to be corrected by our closest friend than by an enemy? Sometimes the kindest thing a wife can do for her husband is to tell him that his idea is absolutely ridiculous--in a gracious way.

A GOOD FRIEND IS THOUGHTFUL AND TACTFUL.
A good friend is sensitive to our needs and speaks in such a way that we are encouraged and enriched. His sensitivity is demonstrated in his understanding that gaiety and goodwill is not always appropriate nor appreciated. As a good friend, don't seek to be understood but try and understand. “It matters not only 'what' we say, but 'how,' 'when' and 'why' we say it.” 'Like one who takes off a garment on a cold day, or like vinegar on soda, is he who sings songs to a troubled heart' (Pro 25:20)
‘Then the king went to his palace, and passed the night fasting: neither were instruments of music brought before him: and his sleep went from him. Then the king arose very early in the morning, and went in haste unto the den of lions. And when he came to the den, he cried with a lamentable voice unto Daniel: and the king spake and said to Daniel, Daniel, servant of the living God, is thy God, whom thou servest continually, able to deliver thee from the lions? Then said Daniel unto the king, O king, live for ever. My God hath sent his angel, and hath shut the lions' mouths, that they have not hurt me: forasmuch as before him innocency was found in me; and also before thee, O king, have I done no hurt.
Then was the king exceeding glad for him, and commanded that they should take Daniel up out of the den. So Daniel was taken up out of the den, and no manner of hurt was found upon him, because he believed in his God. (Daniel 6vs18-23)
The King lost his sleep and even appetite for the sake of his friend Daniel. He was thoughtful and tactful. That is the kind of friends you should be looking for and not the political friends- those who identify with you only when you are succeeding. A friend is a hand that is always holding yours, no matter how close or far apart you may be. A friend is someone who is always there and will always care. A friend is a feeling of forever in the heart. Always thoughtful and tactful

A GOOD FRIEND SHARPENS US. Not only do we need to be criticized when necessary, but sometimes we need to be probed or stretched in our thinking. A good friend does not allow us to become intellectually stagnant, but prods us on to higher and greater thoughts. You only meet your once in a life time friend that will sharpen your life… once in a lifetime.
‘Iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another’ (Pro 27:17). ‘A plan in the heart of a man is like deep water, but a man of understanding draws it out’ (Pro 20:5). Isn't this true to life? Don't you seek to develop friendships with those who will challenge your thinking and present you with new avenues of thought? Why should one of these friends not be your mate? A friend that is ready to contribute to your development and bring out the best in you for others to see. His strength begins where your own ends and he is ever ready to motivate you forward and amplify your gifts and talents so that you can achieve God’s divine mandate for your life.

A GOOD FRIEND OFFERS US WISE COUNSEL.
Those whom we choose as friends should be marked by wisdom and thus have godly counsel to offer. 'Oil and perfume make the heart glad, so a man's counsel is sweet to his friend' (Pro 27:9).
Think back for a moment about the account of David, Nabal, and Abigail in (1 Samuel 25). David was angered because of the ungracious words of Nabal to his young men.
He was determined to wipe out every male in the house of Nabal (25:13,34).Abigail quickly formulated a plan to appease David's anger and then spoke words of wise counsel, pointing out how detrimental David's actions would be to his future rule as king (25:28-31). David's reply indicates his appreciation of the wisdom of her words:
Then David said to Abigail, “Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, who sent you this day to meet me, and blessed be your discernment, and blessed be you, who have kept me this day from bloodshed, and from avenging myself by my own hand” (1 Sam. 25:32-33).
I would simply point out that David was indeed wise to marry a woman who could offer such wise counsel. And we would do well to marry one who offers wise counsel as well. Why is it, then, that husbands seem to think that the biblical instruction concerning the submission of the wife to her husband precludes her offering him wise counsel, if offered tactfully and in a submissive spirit?
Let us learn from David and Abigail. Good friends are like stars…you don't always see them, but you know they are always there. When it hurts to look back, and you're scared to look ahead, you can look beside you and your wise best friend will be there to counsel you.
While we should seek those with the above-mentioned qualities to be our friends, we must also remember that a good friend doesn't seek to be understood but rather seek to understand.

FRIENDSHIP NUGGETS
*A good friend remembers what we were and sees what we can be.
*The only way to have a friend is to be one.
*A friend is someone who is there for you when he'd rather be somewhere else.
*All love that has not friendship for its base, is like a mansion built upon the sand.
*A mirror reflects a man's face, but what he is really like is shown by the kind of friends he chooses.
*In a friend you find a second self.
*Your friends will know you better in the first minute they meet you than your acquaintances will know you in a thousand years.
*Every gift from a friend is a wish for your happiness...
*A friend is someone who lets you have total freedom to be yourself.
*Everyone has a 'best friend' during each stage of life -- only a precious few have the same one.…...

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