The Fragrance of Friendship

When you give a girl a flower, especially a rose, the first thing she does is smell it. The fresh, sweet smell fills her senses and brings a smile. One sniff isn’t enough; she will smell it several times. There is something delightful and pleasant in smelling a flower. Well, that is how we should feel about our friends. Friendship should fill your senses with delight and add a sweet aroma to your life. The Bible says in Proverbs 27:9, “The sweet smell of perfume and oils is pleasant, and so is good advice from a friend” (ESV). When you think of your friends, are you filled with the sweet smell of perfume? 

Friendship is a treasure from heaven; a gift from God. The Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary defines friend as, “One attached to another by affection or esteem; A favored companion.” I am not speaking about Facebook friends or casual acquaintances; I am referring to your close friends—the ones you esteem as favored companions. That is a great term! A favored companion is someone you want to be with. You enjoy them. When you leave them, you have feelings of goodness, joy, love, and peace, which are the fruit of the Spirit. Friends make you feel valued and special. They are like well-watered plants, and they bring “Sonshine” into your day. After spending time with a friend, you should leave feeling encouraged and smelling the sweet aroma of life. Proverbs 15:30 says, “A cheerful look brings joy to the heart; good news makes for good health” (NLT). I love going to cafés to meet friends. As I wait for a friend to arrive, I notice others meeting with smiles and hugs. It fills my heart with joy to watch friends embracing and laughing. What a true gift from God! He gave us His love so that we are able to love. It is a true blessing to love and be loved. Encounters with my friends are usually longer than I plan. The conversations are centered around praising the Lord and all He has done in our lives. Before we know it, hours have passed. I smell like coffee beans the rest of the day because I spent so much time there! That pleasant smell reminds me of the time I have spent in fellowship with a dear friend long into the evening hours.

Real friends leave you with a pleasant fragrance because conversation is enjoyable and their advice is like sweet-smelling perfume! I believe that after spending time with friends, if you find yourself feeling weighed down with heaviness or negativity, you might ask yourself if this person is someone you want to spend time with. Perhaps it is time to pray about your current friendships and ask God to remove those who are polluting your life.

The Bible tells us in Psalm 1:1, “Blessed is the one who does not walk in the step with the wicked or sit in the company of mockers” (NIV). Discern what your friends say and whether it is uplifting conversation.  Proverbs 16:28 says, “A perverse person stirs up conflict, and a gossip separates close friends” (NIV). Have you ever been around someone who has nothing positive to say? Be careful or you will start thinking and acting in the same way. Their bitterness and anger will catch fire and spread to you. Ephesians 4:29 says, “Do not let unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that It may benefit those who listen” (NIV). Proverbs 12:26 says, “The righteous choose their friends carefully, but the way of the wicked leads them astray” (NIV).

Many verses in the Bible caution us about the friends we choose. First Corinthians 15:33 says, “Do not be misled; ‘Bad company corrupts good behavior’” (NIV), and Proverbs 18:24 says, “One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin” (NIV). There may be people who are not your friends and need your counsel; this does not include them, but rather those you call “friends.” Don’t choose them lightly. A friend should be a favored companion. You must remain diligent to guard your heart. Proverbs 4:23 says: “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it” (NIV). You alone choose who deserves the sacred title of friend. You have heard that you can’t choose your family, but you do choose your friends. Choose wisely who you let into your inner circle.

True friendship leaves you smelling the goodness that life has. You should smell the goodness of life after being with friends, even if the time or situation is difficult. Friendship leaves you with the fragrance of support, joy, peace, and love. I hope the fragrance of friendship fills your life.

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