Relationships matter! God created us to be in relationship with one another. Whether in a family, church, office or community – we have been built to be in constant interaction with one another. It is so important as a parent to often say a prayer for godly and meaningful friendships for your child.
But, as much as we desire to have friends and be in relationship with each other, we must be intentional in choosing friendships and relationships that bring value into our lives and build us up. I often tell my children this – choose your friends wisely.
Children also struggle in the area friendships. While some children struggle to make friends, some of them feel betrayed by their friends and there are those who do not even know how to choose and make friends. The kind of friendships that your children allow in their lives have the capacity to influence them in many ways.
Who is a Godly Friend?
A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity. – Proverbs 17:17
One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. – Proverbs 18:24
Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken. – Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing. – I Thessalonians 5:11
Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another. – Proverbs 27:17
This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. – John 15:12-13
Oil and perfume make the heart glad, and the sweetness of a friend comes from his earnest counsel. – Proverbs 27:9
Now when Job’s three friends heard of all this adversity that had come upon him, they came each one from his own place, Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite; and they made an appointment together to come to sympathize with him and comfort him. – Job 2:11
And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. – Hebrews 10:24-25
Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. – Galatians 6:9-10
Wounds from a sincere friend are better than many kisses from an enemy. – Proverbs 27:6
Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another. – Ephesians 4:25
According to the bible, a godly friend is that person who encourages, builds you up, stirs you up, sharpens you, supports you, loves you and sticks with you through the good and bad times. Also, a godly friend is kind, tender-hearted, forgives, will speak the truth to you in love and pray for you. It is every parent’s earnest desire that their children have godly and meaningful friendships in their lives.
Good and Bad Friendships – Examples from the Bible
The bible shows us different kinds of friendships. While some friendships reflected the nature and character of God, there are those friendships that destroyed lives and destinies.
Ruth and Naomi
“But Ruth replied, ‘Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the LORD deal with me, be it ever so severely, if even death separates you and me. – Ruth 1:16-17
The friendship between Ruth and Naomi teaches us that friendship transcends age and culture. Ruth found a friend in Naomi her mother-in-law who was much older than her and was of a different culture. Their friendship speaks of loyalty, trust and commitment.
David and Jonathan
Jonathan said to David, “Go in peace, for we have sworn friendship with each other in the name of the Lord, saying, ‘The Lord is witness between you and me, and between your descendants and my descendants forever. Then David left, and Jonathan went back to the town. – I Samuel 20:42
The friendship of David and Jonathan teaches us about sacrificial love and loyalty. Theirs was an instant bond that thrived on love and deep respect for one another. Jonathan protected David when his father Saul tried to kill him. On the other hand, David looked after Jonathan’s crippled son long after he was dead.
Moses and Aaron
Then the Lord’s anger burned against Moses and he said, “What about your brother, Aaron the Levite? I know he can speak well. He is already on his way to meet you, and he will be glad to see you. You shall speak to him and put words in his mouth; I will help both of you speak and will teach you what to do. He will speak to the people for you, and it will be as if he were your mouth and as if you were God to him. But take this staff in your hand so you can perform the signs with it. – Exodus 4:14-16
Moses and Aaron were brothers, but their relationship teaches us a lot about having a friend who supports you in accomplishing purpose. Their friendship also paints a beautiful picture of support and encouragement in friendships. Aaron stood in and compensated for Moses’s inadequacies and feelings of fear. And together they won battles, did great miracles, and accomplished much more than either of them could have done alone.
Paul and Timothy
I have been reminded of your sincere faith which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also.” – 2 Timothy 1:6-7
Paul was a mentor who stirred up faith and purpose in Timothy’s heart. God made their paths cross in a relationship whose key purpose was spreading the gospel of Christ. Their friendship teaches us about purposeful relationships that can advance the kingdom of God.
Jonadab and Amnon
But Amnon had a very crafty friend—his cousin Jonadab. He was the son of David’s brother Shimea. One day Jonadab said to Amnon, “What’s the trouble? Why should the son of a king look so dejected morning after morning? – 2 Samuel 13:3
It was Jonadab that hatched the plan that led to Tamar’s rape. Jonadab encouraged evil not caring what the consequences of Amnon’s actions would be on Tamar. He was aware of Amnon’s incestuous lust towards his sister, but rather than reprimand him, he encouraged him to do evil. Jonadab is an example of the kind of friend you do not want your child to have – a friend that conceives and plots evil.
Judas Iscariot and Jesus Christ
Then one of the Twelve—the one called Judas Iscariot—went to the chief priests and asked, “What are you willing to give me if I deliver him over to you?” So they counted out for him thirty pieces of silver. From then on Judas watched for an opportunity to hand him over. – Matthew 26:14-16
Judas Iscariot was one of the twelve disciples that were chosen by Jesus. He was also a friend of Jesus. This same Judas was fully involved in the ministry of Jesus. He saw the miracles and heard the teachings of Christ. But Judas was driven by greed and the love of money and went on to betray Jesus. This friend of Jesus betrayed him with a kiss and handed him over to his enemies. May God deliver our children from the likes of friends like Judas Iscariot.
Delilah and Samson
After this he loved a woman in the Valley of Sorek, whose name was Delilah. And the lords of the Philistines came up to her and said to her, “Seduce him, and see where his great strength lies, and by what means we may overpower him, that we may bind him to humble him. And we will each give you 1,100 pieces of silver. So Delilah said to Samson, “Please tell me where your great strength lies, and how you might be bound, that one could subdue you. – Judges 16:4-6
When Delilah saw that he had told her all his heart, she sent and called the lords of the Philistines, saying, “Come up again, for he has told me all his heart.” Then the lords of the Philistines came up to her and brought the money in their hands. She made him sleep on her knees. And she called a man and had him shave off the seven locks of his head. Then she began to torment him, and his strength left him. – Judges 16:18-19
Samson was in a false love relationship with a woman he had no business being with. Delilah was a deceptive woman who knew how to seduce, entrap and hand a man over to his enemies. She pressured Samson so much that he willingly revealed the secret of his strength to her. Samson lacked discernment and wisdom. His friendship with Delilah led to his downfall.
King Rehoboam’s Bad Friends
But Rehoboam rejected the advice the elders gave him and consulted the young men who had grown up with him and were serving him. 9 He asked them, “What is your advice? How should we answer these people who say to me, ‘Lighten the yoke your father put on us’? – 1 Kings 12:8-9
King Rehoboam rejected the counsel given to him by the elders who had served his father when he was alive. Instead, he turned to his friends who lacked wisdom for advice. They gave him counsel which led to his fall as king over Israel. Rehoboam’s bad friends contributed to his fall from grace, their advice sparked a rebellion that led him to lose a greater part of his kingdom. This story is a great reminder to our children about the kind of company we keep as friends.
Bible Verses About Bad Friends
He who walks with wise men will be wise, But the companion of fools will suffer harm. – Proverbs 13:20
Do not associate with a man given to anger; Or go with a hot-tempered man, Or you will learn his ways and find a snare for yourself. – Proverbs 22:24-25
Do not be deceived: “Bad company corrupts good morals. – 1 Corinthians 15:33
One who is righteous is a guide to his neighbor, but the way of the wicked leads them astray. – Proverbs 12:26
Many will say they are loyal friends, but who can find one who is truly reliable? – Proverbs 20:6
Jesus Calls you Friend
There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me. – John 15:13-15
Jesus came and modelled to us what true friendship looks like. His was a friendship dedicated to bringing us salvation and eternal joy. This friendship opens our heart to know the father and leads us into a deeper relationship with God. The greatest and most meaningful friendship of all is when you are a friend of God. As parents, we must teach our children grow their friendship with God through his word.
Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” –James 4:8
A Prayer for Godly and Meaningful Friendships for Your Child
Dear Lord, thank you for being the greatest friend of all to my children. Thank you for your love, sacrifice and undying love for them. May they always find in you a friend that they can talk to and share their deepest fears and desires with.
Father, thank you for helping my children know that their self-esteem is rooted in you. They will not seek validation in the wrong places and in hurtful relationships. I declare today that every child of mine is a friend of God. Precious Holy Spirit, always remind my children that you are the one true friend that sticks closer than a brother.
Lord, I pray for any one of my children who still struggles with making friends. Help them to open their hearts to receive the right kind of friends into their lives. Help them to step out boldly and show themselves friendly. Today, I ask that you help my children act in ways that will attract godly friends into their lives.
Father, thank you for surrounding my children with godly friends. Fill their lives with purposeful relationships and associations. May they attract and retain friends that will build them up and deepen their walk with God. Thank you for giving them a discerning heart so that they will be able to discern between good and bad friends in their lives.
Friends are those rare people who ask how we are and then wait to hear the answer. – Ed Cunningham
I declare that my children are protected from friends with foolish tendencies. May they not be found amid bad company and those who love evil. Keep them far from people with loose morals and perverse ways. Also keep them away from friends driven by anger and those who lack self-control.
Direct their feet from the paths of wicked and treacherous friends who disguise as good friends. Remove anyone from their lives who is not a godly influence. Give them the wisdom to guard and remove themselves from toxic relationships and influences.
Lord, I pray that you will bless my children with godly and meaningful friendships in their life’s journey. Bless them with true and wise friends for every season of their lives. Give them friends that will stand by them through thick and thin.
I ask that you bring friends into their lives that will stir up faith and purpose in their hearts. Order their paths to friends that will influence their walk with God positively. May they have the kind of friends that together, they will accomplish great things for humanity, God and for the advancement of his kingdom on earth.
Dear Father, I ask that you bring mentors and role models in the form of friends into my children’s lives. Surround them with friends who will love them wholeheartedly and selflessly. Bring friends in the form of encouragers, builders and equippers into my children’s lives. May their lives never be void of wise and honorable friends.
I pray also that my children will be loyal friends. May they always be that kind of friend who is patient, loving, kind and caring. May their friendships forever bear good and worthy fruits that will always speak of love, commitment, sacrifice, respect, trust and dedication. Amen!
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