It’s often said in times of adversity, “wow, I really found out who my true friends were!” When life comes crashing down all around us it is the well nourished solid relationships that have gained the right to have entrance into our lives. When life is hard, how thankful we can be for the times we invested our time and love into the lives of others, and have also been open to receiving their care, counsel and love. Good relationships are a precious balm to the heart of God and to those who follow Him.
Jonathan and David went through such a time of adversity. We pick up the narrative in I Samuel 23:16-18. “”Jonathan went to find David and encouraged him to stay strong in his faith in God. “Don’t be afraid,” Jonathan reassured him. “My father will never find you! You are going to be the king of Israel, and I will be next to you, as my father, Saul, is well aware.” So the two of them renewed their solemn pact before the Lord. Then Jonathan returned home, while David stayed at Horeh.”” (New Living Translation)
Jonathan first encourages David. Jonathan could encourage David because he knew him well. They had a long history. Jonathan’s words were not shallow compliments. Jonathan could touch David’s heart deeply because of the condition of their friendship. Jonathan’s concern was that David stay strong in his faith. Their friendship was not only to make each other feel good. There was a strong vertical element which realizes a person’s well-being is primarily attended to by the Great Physician. The relationship with God is most important. Love points others to Jesus. Jonathan reassured David. We need that calm stability in our friends when we are going through a tough time. “Don’t be afraid,” is such godly counsel! First, we see it in the Bible over and over again, so these words are truly from the heart of God. As followers of Christ, we live by faith, and not by fear. The presence of fear allows us to choose to put our trust in God. It is then that we can have inward peace instead of fear. Then David and Jonathan took the time and the formality to renew their solemn pact before the Lord.
Is there a friend you need to reach out to today? Is there someone afraid whom you need to reassure of God’s love and care? Is there someone you need to look in the eye and take by the hand and say, “I really love you and you are my friend.”
Stay strong in the Lord dear friends!