Yesterday, I wrote about the blessing of friendship. Over the weekend, my pastor spoke about having friends who love us enough to offer reproof. You know the type of friends who see we are doing something wrong and who are bold enough to say it.
Faithful are the wounds of a friend. Proverbs 27: 6a (NASB)
Ouch! I don’t think I had ever really dissected that verse. Reliable, faithful friends. Check! I’ve got those. Friends who point out what I don’t like to hear. Yep! I’ve got those too. I have a couple friends who God’s mission for their lives must be to point out whenever I’ve said “Yes” once too many times. Do I like it? Not usually. Do I make excuses? Absolutely! Do I know they are right? Yes, and eventually, I accept that they have offered sage advice. There is always the one friend, however faithful, that just comes right out and says it like it is.
After my pastor drew attention to that verse on Sunday, I was immediately transported back to a day about a week ago. That day we received some unsettling news, and there was an big evening event at our school I was to attend. I chose to stay home to be quiet and crochet. After a while, I received a text from THAT friend.
Where are you?
I didn’t feel well. Chose to stay home. I’m watching Matlock & crocheting.
Dan said you were under the weather.
Yeah, I’m fine. Just wanted a quiet night at home.
Yeah, whatever! I don’t believe you. What is really going on?
What just happened here? She saw right through my smoke screen, and she called me on it. Since she was sitting in the bleachers surrounded by my husband and many of our friends, I sent her the honest answer, but prefaced it with a “DO NOT FREAK OUT! I will call you tomorrow.” text. Then I proceeded to tell her that we learned that Sawyer was going to need another surgery. I always knew it might have to happen, but I just wasn’t ready for it yet.
It was going to be surgery – number 7, and another one in March. This month has not-so-affectionately become surgery month for our boy. I hate it, and I just needed a night to process it. I think if I had gone to the school and anyone even looked at me, I would have cried. I couldn’t bring myself to put on a happy face. Instead, I chose to stay home and surround myself with comforting things – old quilts, old crafts, and old shows. The whole time I sat at home wishing this wasn’t our life, and wishing I could I wish it all away.
In reality, even though I was trying to hide from the world, God knew exactly what was going on. He wasn’t fooled for a minute. His awareness of my sadness is most likely what caused my friend to basically say, “Cut the crap. I don’t know what’s going on, but you are NOT fine.” Faithful are the wounds of a friend.
Her “wounds” allowed me to open up and share with her and several others about what my tomorrow holds. Her “wounds” allowed me to face my fears, but more importantly, it reminded me of the heart of this verse. Friends who say it like it is do so because they love us. They remind us that even if we feel isolated, we are never really alone.