Recognizing Your Friends and Enemies: P.4 (6.27.18)

Every relationship in life is making something easier. God uses relationships to accomplish things He wants done.

It is important to recognize what types of relationships are in our lives. It helps us to correctly manage our expectations. You’ll expect more from those you are closest to.

Any relationship that has a purpose will, at some point, be targeted by the enemy.

Psalm 55:12-14
For it was not an enemy that reproached me; then I could have borne it: neither was it he that hated me that did magnify himself against me; then I would have hid myself from him:
 But it was thou, a man mine equal, my guide, and mine acquaintance. We took sweet counsel together, and walked unto the house of God in company.

The number one tool the enemy uses against relationships is offense. He wants to drive a wedge in our relationships and get us offended at each other. His ultimate goal is to get us offended at God.  Our job is to live with an attitude of forgiveness. No matter how close we are to another human, eventually they will let us down. Jesus is the only one capable of never letting us down.

Matthew 11:6
And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me.

Three types of friends:

1) Confidants:
They’re the friends who are with you for life. You can be real with a confidant because there is complete trust and transparency in the relationship. You can share your mess and be vulnerable with a confidant, knowing they wont hate you for it, or use it against you. They are like the “friend that sticks closer than a brother.”

2) Constituents:
A constituent isn’t necessarily for you. Rather, they are for the same thing you are for. You join forces because you both have the same objective. It’s the objective that brings you together- not each other. If you ever stop being for that thing, the relationship will hurt, because the common denominator was the objective. Constituents are not bad people. You just can’t put the expectations of a confidant on a constituent without ending up offended.

Sometimes God will put people in your life to help you reach an objective. Once that objective is fulfilled, the friendship fizzles out. Thats okay. Appreciate the time they helped get you through.

3) Comrades:
They are not for you–nor are they for the thing you are for. The comrade shows up in your life when they find out that you are against the same thing they are against. You come together out of a mutual opposition to something. Comrades join ranks to oppose something. God will bring comrades in your life when what you are opposing is right.

God can turn friends into any of these categories at any time. Its important to recognize what category a person is in during the current season so that you can correctly manage your expectations of them.

 

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