Fair Weather Friends :: by Grant Phillips

What is a “fair weather friend?” Briefly, a fair weather friend is:

·        One who is with you only when things are going well

·        One who is with you only when they want something

·        One who skedaddles (runs away) when you’re in trouble

·        One who disappears when you have nothing to offer

I, as probably most of you, have never had a truck load of money. For those who have, I’m sure they have been “blessed” with, at least some, fair weather friends, friends who are there for the money. When the money is gone, so are the “friends.”

Even those in the seedy world of illicit drug use have experienced fair weather friends. As long as they have the dope, they have the friends. When the dope is gone, there go the friends.

Ever been through some serious problems in your life? How many of your friends were still there for you? I recall that Job had three friends that stayed, but with all their accusatory remarks, I dare say he could have done without them. Even his wife nagged him.

So, when the sun is shining in our lives, our friends are close by, but let it rain, and off they go. Fortunately, that’s not always true. Many of us are blessed with friends who are there through “thick and thin,” a cliché for “the good times and the bad times.”

What about those who do not have these type of friends though? Is it possible that there are people who have no one to turn to, not even family? It is not only possible, but true. There may be someone reading this article that has plenty of friends, but they are all fair weather friends. What a lonely world it must be, surrounded by people, but not a true friend among them. And then there are those who are absolutely alone, without even a fair weather friend, just them, alone.

I am reminded of an old hymn called, “What A Friend We Have In Jesus.” The words were written by Joseph Scriven in 1857.

What a Friend we have in Jesus,

all our sins and griefs to bear!

What a privilege to carry

everything to God in prayer!

O what peace we often forfeit,

O what needless pain we bear,

All because we do not carry

everything to God in prayer.

Have we trials and temptations?

Is there trouble anywhere?

We should never be discouraged;

take it to the Lord in prayer.

Can we find a friend so faithful

who will all our sorrows share?

Jesus knows our every weakness;

take it to the Lord in prayer.

Are we weak and heavy laden,

cumbered with a load of care?

Precious Savior, still our refuge,

take it to the Lord in prayer.

Do your friends despise, forsake you?

Take it to the Lord in prayer!

In His arms He’ll take and shield you;

you will find a solace there.

Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised

Thou wilt all our burdens bear

May we ever, Lord, be bringing all to

Thee in earnest prayer.

Soon in glory bright unclouded there

will be no need for prayer

Rapture, praise and endless worship

will be our sweet portion there.

I have gone through occasions in my life where I experienced loneliness, and it is true that even though you may be in a room full of people, you can be all alone. Many circumstances can produce this experience, and that is when you really need your true friends.

However, as much as I love and appreciate my family and true friends, none of them can provide the comfort needed that Jesus can give. There is no comfort like reading His Word and letting it soak through to the very soul. There is no comfort like just talking to our Father in Heaven and knowing that I have His undivided attention and that He cares for me personally.

“6Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God? 7But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows.” (Luke 12:6-7)

Do take note of this one thing about our Heavenly Father, He knows all about us, and He still loves us. How many of our friends would love us if they knew all about us? Can’t you just hear the floors creaking as they walk to the door, and then the sound of it closing as they go on their way?

“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” (Romans 3:23)

“All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.” (Isaiah 53:6)

If you have been a bad friend will your friend forgive you and continue to love you? Before we knew Jesus as our Savior we were a sin-stained and rebellious people, but He gave His life to provide us a way out of Satan’s world. Even as Christians, there are times, we so mightily fail in our faithfulness to Him, but He still loves and keeps us.

There is no friend like Jesus Christ.

How many times have we, as Christians, ignored His Word and failed to commune with Him in prayer … until we got in trouble? Perhaps that is sometimes the reason for our troubles. He wants to keep us close to Him. Why does a parent discipline a disobedient child, to hurt them? No, the punishment is to help them avoid the pitfalls that are ahead and stay close in the circle of protection.

Will we avoid problems in our lives by accepting Jesus as our Savior? Will we avoid problems in our lives, as Christians, by living for Him? No. the Apostle John said, “Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you.” (1 John 3:13) Jesus said, “If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.” (John 15:18)

We who live in a fallen world will always have problems. We may not always have good friends, but we will always have problems. Then we find out who our true friends really are. The Scriptures say, “A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.” (Proverbs 18:24) That friend is Jesus.

But Jesus is more than a friend. He is the Savior. He is the Creator. He is the Word. He is God. Even though He is God and we are mere mortals, He is a friend, “that sticketh closer than a brother.”

Don’t concern yourself with your fair weather friends. Enjoy the companionship of a real friend, the greatest friend anyone could ever have. Worship Him, as He is God. Serve Him, as He is Master. Fellowship with Him, as He is a tried and true Friend.