Choosing Friends Wisely

elizabeth-george choosing-friends-wisely

While commencement exercises might look a bit different this spring, or even be canceled outright in light of the recent pandemic, there are many young people well-deserving of praise for a job well done! If you are a soon-to-be high school graduate (or the parent of one) this devotion is particularly for you. May God bless you in this new phase of life!

You may be one of those guys who’s never met a stranger. Maybe you can talk to just about anyone and make friends eas­ily. Or maybe, you have a longtime childhood friend and the two of you are inseparable. But, for a lot of guys, it’s not easy to find a good friend. So whether you have many friends or a few, I’m sure you will agree that friendship is a two-way street. If you want a good friend, you have to be a good friend.

In the Bible, God gives guidelines on how to be a good friend:

“As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another” (Proverbs 27:17).

“He who covers over an offense promotes love, but who­ever repeats the matter separates close friends” (Prov­erbs 17:9).

“Do not forsake your friend” (Proverbs 27:10).

How can you choose friends that last? As I said earlier, devel­oping the right friendships starts with you. You need to be the right kind of friend. Here are some choices you’ll need to make if you want to be a top-notch friend.

  1. Choose to Be Yourself

Don’t try to impress others by saying and doing things you think will make them like you. And this goes double if your ac­tions would be contrary to God’s Word in any way. Remember, you are looking for a friend who isn’t phony—who isn’t pretend­ing to be one person when he’s really someone else. Choose to be what God wants you to be. Be genuine, and when you are comfortable with who you are, then others will also feel comfortable when they’re around you. They might not share your beliefs, but they will respect you for what you stand for. 

  1. Choose to Be Honest

Trust is essential in any relationship. If you want to have friends who are honest with you, then (you guessed it) you must be honest with them, even if it means having a difficult conversation. Honesty is one of the benefits of a true friendship. The Bible puts it this way: “Wounds from a friend can be trusted… and the pleasantness of one’s friend springs from his earnest counsel” (Proverbs 27:6, 9).

  1. Choose to Be Loyal

Don’t be a fair-weather friend. Make sure you’re not the kind of buddy who bails as soon as something goes wrong. Friendships will face challenges. When you stick together in spite of your circumstances, the relationship strengthens. Loyalty is essential in friendship. Therefore, you must become a loyal friend yourself. In the Bible, David and Jona­than’s friendship was characterized by loyalty even in the midst of severe adversity (1 Samuel 20:14-18).


Think about your friendships and determine whether you are trying to be the kind of friend God describes.


Lord, help me to be the kind of friend You describe in Your Word and please, place people in my life who model those friendships to me.

RENEWING RESOURCESjim-george a-young-mans-guide-to-making-right-choices

A Young Man’s Guide to Making Right Choices by Jim George is the perfect gift for the graduate in your life. Young ladies will enjoy A Young Woman’s Guide to Making Right Choices by Elizabeth George.



How genuine are you with your friends? How honest are you? How loyal are you?


Be the kind of friend “who sticks closer than a brother” (Proverbs 18:24). Don’t you want the same from your friends?

Jim and Elizabeth George

Jim and Elizabeth George are bestselling authors and national speakers dedicated to helping people live a life after God’s own heart. Together, they have written over 150 books with more than 14 million copies sold around the world. For over 35 years, the teachings and steadfast example of Elizabeth and Jim have helped countless men and women:

  • Simplify life by focusing on God’s priorities.
  • Appreciate God’s Word and apply it to everyday situations.
  • Respond to circumstances with confidence by seeing yourself through God’s loving eyes.
  • Increase closeness in marriage by serving and honoring each other.
  • Powerfully shape the hearts of children and teenagers.
  • Enjoy greater intimacy with God.

Learn more about Jim and Elizabeth George here.

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