Allies – Week 4


4 – Friends [Re]Build Trust

Big Idea: show me your friends and I’ll show you your future.

Theme verse: “Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. 10 If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble.  12 A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.” (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10,12)

1.  Trustworthiness is rooted in a willingness to forgive.

“Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.” (Colossians 3:13)

  1.  A trustworthy friend is willing to own up to their own faults and ask for forgiveness.

“One day when Jacob was cooking some stew, Esau arrived home from the wilderness exhausted and hungry. 30 Esau said to Jacob, “I’m starved! Give me some of that red stew!” (This is how Esau got his other name, Edom, which means “red.”) 31 “All right,” Jacob replied, “but trade me your rights as the firstborn son.” 32 “Look, I’m dying of starvation!” said Esau. “What good is my birthright to me now?” 33 But Jacob said, “First you must swear that your birthright is mine.” So Esau swore an oath, thereby selling all his rights as the firstborn to his brother, Jacob. 34 Then Jacob gave Esau some bread and lentil stew. Esau ate the meal, then got up and left. He showed contempt for his rights as the firstborn.” … “Esau exclaimed, “No wonder his name is Jacob, for now he has cheated me twice. First he took my rights as the firstborn, and now he has stolen my blessing. Oh, haven’t you saved even one blessing for me?” 38 Esau pleaded, “But do you have only one blessing? Oh my father, bless me, too!” Then Esau broke down and wept. 41 From that time on, Esau hated Jacob because their father had given Jacob the blessing. And Esau began to scheme: “I will soon be mourning my father’s death. Then I will kill my brother, Jacob.” (Genesis 25:29-34; 27:36,38,41)

When broken trust is forgiven, it can lead to building even stronger trust in our friendships.

Practicals…

1.  Let your friend know how much you care.

“Do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.” (Philippians 2:4)

2.  Give your friend an open invitation to talk.

  1.  Be trustworthy and stop any deception.

“An offended friend is harder to win back than a fortified city. Arguments separate friends like a gate locked with bars.” (Proverbs 18:19)

Without God’s forgiveness and love flowing through us, we will never be able to adequately forgive others.

Discussion Q’s

–       In what areas are you strong in friendships? Why would you answer that way?

–       Have you had a time when a friend broke the trust of the friendship? How did that make you feel? Were you able to rebuild the friendship?

–       How did the story of Corrie Ten Boom affect you?  If she could forgive her captor, what is holding you back?

–       How can you take what you learned and apply it to your friendships this week?