“Have pity on me, my friends, have pity” – Job 19:21a
“And Saul’s son Jonathan went to David at Horesh and helped him find strength in God” – 1 Samuel 23:16
I’ve been reading the book of Job now for a little while, and even though so many lessons can be learned from this man’s life, the one that has always ministered to me was the kind of friends he had.
I remember a time in my life (many years back now) when I had relocated to Manchester to start a new phase in my life and how my meeting with a young woman by the name of “Joy” changed my LIFE for Good. I had just invited the Lord Jesus to be my Lord and Saviour yet again and was getting to know what all that involved. Then I met her, there was something so vibrant, so wonderful, so successful, so powerful about her that I said to the Lord Jesus whatever she has I want it (and if you can double). Like Elisha did in the time of Elijah, I had recognized that she was no ordinary person, and made plans quickly to find out. Every time I would listen to her talk about her love for Christ, and her life exemplified what she spoke. I’m sure she might have had her weak moments, but I had never met anyone with greater faith and walk than this young woman, and knew that if I was going to succeed in getting what she had, I had to partner with her, and not too long after asked her if she could be my prayer partner. One of the many lessons that the Lord used her to teach me was on regular bases she would ask who are your friends Life of a stranger? Till today a question which on a daily basis I ask myself, and a mental inventory I still continue to check.
If David’s friends in the Kings palace at the time of the reign of King Saul (1 Samuel 16:21-22) had known the man that David was and who he was to become (1 Samuel 16:12-13); if they had known that the man they had pursued who in fleeing for his life went and hid in a cave; if they had known that the Lord had chosen David as His priest and ruler of His people; If they had known that David was to become a King, a man that God would call a man after His own heart; If they had known that his name will forever be remembered for generations to come; if they had known that he would have a son who was to become the wisest and wealthiest man ever known; if they had known that this man would write Psalms that will continued to be an inspiration to all that studies it; if they had known the anointing that was upon this man; if they had known that though he may look young and may have been successful in a few battles, that he was a man that God had chosen to be His mighty man; I somehow don’t think they would still be enjoying the comforts that King Saul had to offer and joined in the hunt to kill and destroy such a man.
If Job’s friend knew that the man they were mocking with their words, and whose condition was of no fault of his but a consequence of his ‘jobless” accuser who had nothing to do with his time but to roam through the earth going to and fro in it looking for people to accuse (Job 1:6-11); if they had known it was an opportunity that Lord had allowed to come into his life, so that He would bless him abundantly greater than what He had previous; since all that he had before was small in the sight of God and God was looking for an opportunity to increase him even greater (Job 8:7); I somehow don’t think they would be too quick to tell him what their heart had been harbouring all this while throughout their friendship; because indeed out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks (Matthew 12:34).
So dear friends, who are your friends? Don’t act surprised when instead of encouraging and comforting you in the day of adversity with God’s word, someone you thought was your friend appears to be doing the exact opposite. Even now my witness is in heaven; my advocate is on high. My intercessor is my friend as my eyes pour out tears to God; on behalf of a man he pleads with God as a man pleads for his friend – Job 16:19-21. If the Lord Jesus (whom for sure we have wronged), still cries to God pleading on our behalf, on what basis does a fellow man have to bring any accusation, or to stand in judgement against another. For we have been sent to encourage one another with the truth (1 Thessalonians 5:11; Hebrews 3:13; 10:25), not be quick to judge (Matthew 7:1; Luke 6:37). Jonathan was such a friend to David (1 Samuel 19:4; 20:18-23; 42), a friend whom always spoke to him truthfully and was always there when David needed help (1 Samuel 23:15-16). Men and friends may look at your outward appearance or current circumstance but it is not enough to know the worth of man (1 Samuel 16:7)
If you knew what the Lord has prepared for you, you will be able to discern who your friends are because your real friends will never stand in your way of fulfilling the purpose for which the Lord has created you especially for. I thank you Lord for the men and women Lord that you have connected me with, whom Lord You have used to bring a much needed blessing upon my life. Today Friends, I thank God for you.