Loneliness is rampant these days. There is hardly enough time with the survival race, to establish real friendship. Many people today feel cutoff and alienated from others. Being in a crowd just makes them more aware of their isolation. Lonely people don't need to hear "have a nice day". They need friends who will stick close, listen, care and often help when it is needed- in good times and bad times.
A true friend is always loyal and borne to help in time of need (Prov. 17:17). There are 'friends' who pretend to be friends but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother (Prov. 18: 24) It is better to have one such friend than dozens of superficial acquaintances, who may often feel they are in a status symbol competition with you, or who secretly rejoice when you are down.
What kind of a friend are you? And who are your friends? There is a vast difference between knowing someone well and being a true friend. The greatest evidence of genuine friendship is loyalty being available to help in times of distress or personal struggles. How loyal are you? Will your friends die from shock if they know what you say about them when they are not watching? What will they feel if your thoughts about them can be revealed? Will they cry out of joy? Or will they cry out of a broken heart? I really wonder. Unfortunately, too many people are fair weather friends, drinking and smoking partners. Very social and ceremonial. The trend is that if you are not 'making It' they begin to mock you, disappear and don't want anything to do with you. They only stick around when there is a big, strong 'success tag' on you. The moment the tag gets loose or shaky they take to their heels. But I believe, the good thing about bad times is that it gives you a clearer picture of who are really your friends. Again, It's a good time to count them, although the counting won't take long because there will be very few to count!
Think of your friends and access your loyalty to them. Stand by them when they need you, who knows, tomorrow you maybe the one in need and the same person you turned your back on in his bad season maybe your only source of help. Remember, situation can change and tables can turn around. That is life for you. But most importantly, if we truly love God, we will love people in and out of season, especially, the people around us that count on our loyalty.
However, there is no greater friend like Jesus. No matter the kind of friends around us He remains the most dependable. Ever ready to listen and to help. Shares in our joy and sorrows, His thoughts for us are always good and not of evil, no back stabbing, no rivalry. I call Him the friend that walks in when every other 'friend' is walking out. What a friend we have in Jesus!
Ogechukwu Maduka is a christain evangelist and a lawyer who loves to write as a means to inspire. A passionate humanitarian and an ardent believer in upholding the digniity of man. She is happily married and blessed with four lovely children. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org