Tuesday, August 6, 2019

The Art Of Being A Good Friend | Navaz D

This message was preached by Navaz at Word of Grace Church on August 4th, 2019. To listen/download the audio please click hereTo listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here

Lots of people claim to be loyal and loving, but where on earth can you find one? Proverbs 20:6 ( The Message translation of the Bible)

This book was written in 700 B.C , that is nearly 3000 years ago. The issues that mankind faces is the same. Why? Because the heart is the same.

Today’s topic is about Friendship, how do I be a good friend, and how do I find a good friend.

 We all live in a very mobile society. Where you were born is not necessarily, where you will live for the rest of your life. we have to learn how to navigate a very fluid society

The way we can navigate all this is:  We need to have some parameters or a grid /point of reference that is constant from which we can view things.

The starting point to having good friends isis to be a good friend.

To be a good friend you first need to understand yourself. Do you know who you are? How would you describe yourself? 

Self-awareness is key to becoming a good healthy friend. If what I do is who  I am then when that changes, my core will get shaken.

But, if what I do does not describe who I am, then circumstances can change around me by my core stays constant.

Do you know that you are created by design? When you know you have been created by design, you will know that you have a purpose. The Bible tells us that even before the world was created, the Creator of everything thought of you and me and had a plan for our life.

At the heart of good friendship whether it is being one or finding a good friend is
Authenticity, vulnerability, trust, respect and listening.

We all have friends at different levels. We have acquaintances, close friends, and deep heart friends. We need to know the distinction between these and not mix them up.

People show up in different ways. We show up in different ways. Our aim is to be authentic in who we are, how we show up and how people experience us.

100% - What you see is what you get. There are no two faces to you. You are not one person in public and another in private.

75% - Is a person who can be 100% but sometimes will not show all of themselves to you if trust has not been established or they are not feeling safe in a situation.

50% -  Are people who walk in the shadows. You are not really sure where you stand in relation to them and you are unclear about who they are?  You are often confused by them because their talk and walk don’t match.

 25%- These people have huge masks and walls. They do not let anyone into their heart.  They can be fake or very frozen and robotic when it comes it interpersonal relationship.
There are many reasons why we show up this way – it could be past hurts, abuse, someone let you down really badly, family/cultural norms of distrust etc. If we have not experienced healthy love and affection as a child that can affect our bonding as adults. It affects our grid from which we build relationships.

 Trust is earned, respect is always given. Healthy friendships take time to develop.  
Trust is built in the small moments – John Gotham.  There are opportunities to build trust and betray it at the same moment.

It all depends on how you respond. Is what I share with you safe with you? Can what others share with me be safe with me?

A person cannot move from acquaintance to deep heart in an instant. That is when most disasters take place because a false sense of intimacy/closeness is created where trust has not been fully established.

Good friendships say I want to give you strength in me to help you be successful, to pull out the gold that is in you.

Can we be trusted to keep confidences?
Trust is at the heart of every relationship. You take that away and you don’t have a relationship anymore. It violates the person just as physical violence does. This is assassinating a person’s character. Its murder undeveloped. Think about it.

Gossip is like bits of paper that are thrown in the wind. Who knows where it goes and can anyone gather all of it back?
“If you reveal your secrets to the wind,
you should not blame the wind for
revealing them to the trees.”

― Kahlil Gibran, The Wanderer

The willingness to share something that needs to be safe with you. The willingness to show up 100% with no masks, no lies or pretense.

For this to happen I need to be non-judgmental for others to be vulnerable with me.
I can fall apart and will not be judged by you.

R esist patronizing
E xercise self-responsibility. Take care of yourself and let people take care of themselves
S uspend critical judgment. Don’t shame or jump to conclusions
P ractice – love, patience, kindness, goodness
E xtend yourself appropriately. Have good boundaries.
C onsider confidentiality
T take one another seriously- don’t be sarcastic or joke about a person’s problem. It can be hurtful


We often communicate to convince someone else about our point of view to win a discussion. The aim of listening is to understand. To have an accurate understanding of how the other person is feeling about a situation.

Sometimes all a friend wants you to do is to  listen with warmth and empathy.
Reflect back what the person is saying

  • You are being manipulated and controlled
  • Fear is used to get you to do something
  • Untrustworthy
  • Insecure about your other friendships
  • Unloving
  • Ego clashes
  • Mean
  • Verbal and /or physical abuse
  • Make you feel “less than”
  • Jealous
  • Agendas
  • Blows hot and cold leading you to feel confused
  • Fake
  • Secretive
  • Holds grudges and makes you pay by withdrawing affection.

Be careful of people who only take from you. We need a balance in our lives. Do you have friends that refresh you as well? Are you one that seeks to refresh others? Are you a giver to taker?

When your life is out of balance, you make wrong decisions. You trust the wrong people. You cross boundaries by overextending yourself in a friendship or allow someone to invade your boundaries.

 So make a list of people in whom you want to invest your time and energy.
Make a list of people of whom when you talk to you feel invigorated. You are important too.


If you start putting this into practice you will develop that constant strong core in you that will help you no matter where life takes you. You will be a better person and you will attract the right kind of people in your life.

Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit-filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that has people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service.  Word of Grace is a part of a wider international family of Churches called RegionsBeyond.To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org. 

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