Traits of true Christian friends

Xanthe Galanis

So, what does a true Christian friendship look like? Let's break it down into traits that are easy to identify.

Christian friends love sacrificially

Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. John 15:13 

Jesus is the finest example of a true Christian friend. His love for us is sacrificial, never selfish. He demonstrated it not only through his miracles of healing, but more fully through the humble service of washing the disciples' feet, and then ultimately, when he laid down his life on the cross.

Christian Friends Trust Completely

A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. Proverbs 18:24 

This proverb reminds us that a true Christian friend is trustworthy, and also warns us that we should only expect to share complete trust with a few loyal friends. Trusting too easily can lead to ruin, so be careful about putting your confidence in a mere companion. Over time our true Christian friends will prove their trustworthiness by sticking closer than a brother or sister.

Christian Friends Give Mutual Edification

"As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another." Proverbs 27:17

True Christian friends will build each other up emotionally, spiritually, and physically. We receive strength, encouragement, and love. We talk, we cry, we listen. But at times we also have to say difficult things our dearest friend needs to hear. Yet, because of the shared trust and acceptance, we are the one person who can impact our friend's heart, for we know how to deliver the hard message with truth and grace. And in turn, a good friend will make you brighter, sharper, and more useful to God.

True Christian friendships are rare treasures. They take time to nurture, but in the process we grow more Christlike.

Prayer: Lord, help me to be diligent in my friendships. I pray that I would be more sacrificial, more trusting and that I would have the grace to let myself be sharpened by my friendships. Amen.