I love having friends. It’s so nice to have someone to laugh with, to cry with, to share with and to love. A friend is someone who is attached to another by affection or esteem. We use terminology like “She is my best friend,” or we might say, “What kind of a friend are they?” We all want a friend and we all need a friend, but we need the right kind of friend. A friend will make us or break us. A friend will build us up or tear us down.
The Bible talks about a friend relationship between Judas and Jesus. In Matthew 46, Judas betrayed his friendship with Jesus with a kiss (26:48). Why a kiss? A kiss fits the definition of friendship; being attached to another by affection. Judas played the part of a friend, but really he had an ulterior motive.
Even though Judas was not a true blue friend, Jesus loved him still. Matthew 26:50 “And Jesus said unto him, Friend, wherefore art thou come? Then, came they, and laid hands on Jesus, and took him.” Judas never fooled Jesus, not one time. Yet, Jesus was always kind, treating Judas with love and respect. The betrayal kiss was done with the front of friendship, but the swords awaited Jesus.
So many times the same is true of Christian friends. Friendship is on the lips but not in the heart. The question I am asking myself and you is, “What kind of friend am I? A Jesus friend or a Judas friend?”
I entitled this blog “Friendship Tactics.” The word tactic is an action or strategy carefully planned to achieve a specific end. A good friendship should be planned. Sometimes it’s good to plan what you are going to say so you don’t say something you shouldn’t say. It’s good to consider your actions so you act in a proper and godly manner. It’s best to think ahead about your reactions so that you react in a way that will not harm your testimony. It’s a good idea to choose your words carefully, thinking ahead of what you will say when and if something improper is discussed. When my husband and I were in Bible College one day he said to me, “I have chosen two couples that I want us to pursue their friendships. I think they would be good for us to get to know and to hang around.” They were truly wonderful friendships.
- A friend knows her friends are human and accepts their faults.
- A friend doesn’t have to prove their friendship.
- A friend has no personal agenda and therefore is not looking for material to convict.
- Plan for the unplanned attacks on your friendships.
- Make sure that your best friends are true followers of Jesus Christ.
- Model your friendships by Jesus’ example.
Be a true friend! No hidden swords to stab your friend in the back. No hidden agenda. Only acceptance, love and helping each other as we grow closer to the best friend we can have, Jesus!