Maurice Roberts has written a chapter titled Christian Friendships in his book The Thought of God that challenges our natural instinct to choose friends according to our like-mindedness but says the ultimate reason for close friends on this journey is to help us war against sin.
"Healthy Christian character, which is full-orbed, well-rounded and rich in good fruits can best be formed within the circle of sanctified friendships. It is a common proverb that 'a man is known by his friends.' This is not surprising because, as the Romans put it, 'a friend is a second self.' That is to say, our intimate friends are what they are to us because they are essentially like us in all that is morally important. We choose our friends, not by accident, but because their souls mirror ours and their minds vibrate in harmony with ours. Friendship begins as soon as this mutual harmony of hearts is felt, and it ends when the harmony ends...
Our best friends are those whose company most makes us afraid of sin. These friends are rare and to be valued like solid gold...There are some Christians who impress us by their talents. But there are also others whose awesome holiness makes us afraid. If we find one friend of this kind, we shall do well to cherish his friendship for life."
How are you chosing your friendships? Remember Paul's warning to the Corinthians, "Bad company corrupts good morals" (1 Corinthians 15:33).
Grace upon grace,