THURSDAY, JULY 4
“Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise,
but the companion of fools will suffer harm.”
Proverbs 13:20 ESV
OPTIMAL FRIENDS ARE PROTECTORS
Some time back in Germany a couple of women were driving down the autobahn when they realized they were low on gas. So they pulled over to a gas station and the driver filled her car up with gas. But then she discovered that she did not have enough money to pay the bill. So she asked her friend to stay behind as a human deposit while she went to withdraw some extra cash. A police spokesman in the German town of Muenchberg said, “Unfortunately, the woman did not return.” Two hours after the 20-year-old driver left, the gas station called the police who then questioned the stranded “deposit” before releasing her. At last report, the Police were investigating the driver on suspicion of fraud.
None of us would want the type of friend who would leave us stranded at a gas station. Yet Proverbs 13:20 teaches us that our close friends who make foolish choices will eventually bring harm in our lives. That doesn’t mean that we will necessarily make foolish choices but it does mean we will eventually suffer the consequences of their foolish choices.
The one who grows wise in the company of wise men is contrasted with the “companion of fools.” The word companion here is the Hebrew word “ra ah” which means to tend or feed sheep – i.e. a shepherd of another. Here is one who is being shepherded by fools. He is fed and tended by them – having them lead him into their ways and their paths.
Our church is filled with stories of people who somehow got caught up in the foolishness of someone they were close to. Our church is also filled with stories of people who have been blessed by wise friends who have walked with them in the best and worst of times. God desires for us to have friends and to be the kind of friends who offer wisdom and can make each other better. Pray for your friends who continue to make foolish choices. Pray about the nature of any relationship that continues to bring pain in your life and ask God how He wants you to move forward.