I am asking this question because the Biblical account of what friends within community should be is far different than what I have seen in the Church Body.
Proverbs 18:24 24 One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
This has not been my experience in the church. I have found that if there is a disagreement and you do not acquiesce to their thoughts they will stop being your friends. I can disagree with someone without agreeing with them especially on secondary issues.
A year or so ago I had a couple of friends who i blatantly told that I record all of my phone calls (because i deal with Government Agencies) stop being my friend because I did not give in to them. My question was, what in our conversations did you have to hide. One was a Pastor whose Church we went to for a period of time and the other a member of his Church.
Not to mention that one of these friends directly lied to me and told me he had talked to his lawyer and recording calls was illegal. When i called him on it (and read him the Criminal Code of Canada on the matter) he said well…ok they did not say it was illegal but unethical.
If you are my friend we may have disagreements and that is ok as my friend Drew Moore stated on his blog. We disagree. He is Liberal and I am Conservative however we can have great discourse and still remain awesome friends.
My wife has lost friends because i frankly will not put up with them hurting her. The first year of our marriage she had friends who we would invite out but then they would not show after spending a lot of money on food and preparing it for them …..after a few times of that it got old real quick and they didnt like me speaking my mind about it.
I always spoke nicely but was protecting my wife and seeing her in tears affected me to go into protection mode.
People are either friends or not and should not bail at the first sign of conflict. They should be willing to discuss and make things right or figure it out.
Colossians 3:12-14 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
I now choose my friends carefully. We do not have to agree however if we disagree as Believers we need to do it properly
I still believe a true friend sticks closer than a brother. I have a few who have shown themselves through all theups and downs of my life and i respect them immensely.
Love your good friends