A true friend and disciple of Christ, is one who is willing to encourage and correct. For most of us, encouraging others comes easy. But, correcting, rebuking, or holding others accountable does not. This is a matter of pride. We don’t want to be seen in a bad light. We don’t want others to be angry with us. We care more about ourselves than the other.
If we truly care for someone, we will make the effort to correct them when we see the need. Wouldn’t a parent stop a toddler from sticking a fork in a light socket, even though it will result in an angry response from the child? Obviously. The parent loves them too much to allow them hurt themselves.
2 Timothy 4:2 preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching
Too often, we see people making decisions that will lead to pain and judgment, but chose not to correct them with love and patience. The easier path is to ignore it. We tell ourselves we shouldn’t judge; its not our responsibility to say something. But scripture tells us something different. We are not the judge; God is. But, we are messengers of His Word. We are called to reprove, rebuke, and exhort according to scripture.
My greatest friendships are those with whom I know I can count on to be faithful to this call towards me. They are faithful to scripture, to the Lord, and they have my best interest in mind. It is a rare friend that will be authentic in this way.
Jesus once rebuked Peter and called him Satan! He loved Peter dearly and was willing to correct him.
I want to be rare and authentic for the glory of God – don’t you?