By Rev. Fr John Damian Adizie, OCD
July 30 is International Day of Friendship. Man is empty without frien-ds. After creation God dis-covered that, “It is not good for a man to be alo-ne” (Genesis 2:18).” Man is a social being. He cannot develop in isolation.
In fact, a tree cannot make a forest! Sirach 6:14-15 declares, “A faithful friend is a sturdy shelter: he that finds one finds a treasu-re. There is nothing so pr-ecious as a faithful friend.” True Friendship is indeed an inexhaustible treasure.
- Friendship requires care: It is not something one should enter anyhow or with anybody. Light and darkness have nothing in common. Proverbs 12:26 declares “The righteous choose their friends care-fully, but the way of the wi-cked leads them astray.”
- Friendship demands Sacrifice: Jesus said, “Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his frien-ds” (John 15:13). Friend-ship cannot grow without sacrifice.
- A True Friend Must be Reliable: Proverbs 18: 24 declares ”One who has unreliable friends so-on comes to ruin, but the-re is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” A true friend must be trust-worthy.
- Bad Friends are dangerous: As Paul declares, “Do not be mis-led: “Bad comp-any corrupts good character” (1 Corinthians 15:33).
- Avoid Hot Tempered Frien-ds: Proverbs 22:24-25 declar-es, “Do not make friends with a hot-tempered per-son, do not associate with one easily angered, or you may learn their ways and get yourself ensnared.” Playing with hot-tempered person is like playing with fire—both are dangerous!
- Associate with Wise Friends: Proverbs 13:20 de-clares ”Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suff-ers harm.” The more you associate with wise frien-ds the wiser you will beco-me.
- Avoid Worldly Friends : James 4:4 declares “You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world means en-mity against God? There-fore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God.” may God deliver you from worldly friends!
- Openness is the ess-ence of true friendship: Jesus told his followers, “No longer do I call you ser-vants, for the servant do-esn’t know what his lord does. But I have called you friends, for everything that I heard from my Father, I have made known to you” (John 15:15). True friends are open to each other.
- Good friends sharp-en themselves: Proverbs 27:17 declares “Iron sharp-ens iron; so a man sharp-ens his friend’s counten-ance.”
- Above all, true Frien-dship attracts God: In Matthew 18:20 Jesus de-clares, ”Where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.” Association with good friends is an asso-ciation with God. It is pleasant to see friends who live in harmony!