Advice on friendships

(Prov 17:9 NIV)  He who covers over an offense promotes love, but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends.

This proverb is saying that we should be willing to disregard the faults of others. Covering over offenses is necessary to any relationship. It is tempting, especially in an argument, to bring up all the mistakes the other person has ever made. Love, however, keeps its mouth shut—difficult though that may be. Try never to bring anything into an argument that is unrelated to the topic being discussed.

 

(Prov 17:14 NIV)  Starting a quarrel is like breaching a dam; so drop the matter before a dispute breaks out.

Do not be quarrelsome.

 

(Prov 26:18-19 NIV)  Like a madman shooting firebrands or deadly arrows {19} is a man who deceives his neighbor and says, "I was only joking!"

Be careful about the kind of jokes we unleash on friends. Some people cannot take it and it can affect your friendship.

 

(Prov 26:20 NIV)  Without wood a fire goes out; without gossip a quarrel dies down.

Gossiping will cause your friendship to deteriorate. Talking about every little irritation and piece of gossip only keeps the fires of anger going. Refusing to discuss them cuts the fuel line and makes the fires die out. Does someone continually irritate you? Decide not to complain about the person, and see if your irritation dies from lack of fuel.

 

(Prov 16:7 NIV)  When a man's ways are pleasing to the LORD, he makes even his enemies live at peace with him.

We want other people to like us, and sometimes we will do almost anything to win their approval. But God tells us to put our energy into pleasing him instead. When we lead a life that is pleasing to God, He promises to bless our friendships.

 

(Prov 15:18 NIV)  A hot-tempered man stirs up dissension, but a patient man calms a quarrel.

Learn to be slow to anger so that quarrels will not erupt at the slightest opportunity.

 

(Prov 15:1 NIV)  A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.

Have you ever tried to argue in a whisper? It is equally hard to argue with someone who insists on answering gently. On the other hand, a rising voice and harsh words almost always trigger an angry response. To turn away wrath and seek peace, choose gentle words.

 

(Prov 28:23 NIV)  He who rebukes a man will in the end gain more favor than he who has a flattering tongue.

Rebuking a friend is sometimes necessary. Flattery never helps a friendship.

 

(Source: Life Application Bible)