Skip to main content

Being a Friend - Who is Honest

Proverbs 27:5-6 says, “Better is open rebuke than hidden love. Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful”

What do you prefer - a friend who flatters you or a friend who tells you the truth even though it might hurt?  It is easy for someone to say nice things about you as it benefits them.  They know that you will like them because they are flattering you.  However, these may not be friends that you can trust.  It is the friends who are willing to risk losing your approval by telling you something that you may not want to hear.  It is these friends who will always be honest.  It is these friends who will say what needs to be said no matter what the cost.  These are the friends you should treasure.  They are honest. 

Being on the receiving end of an honest conversation can be difficult.  You might not even want to see that friend ever again. Consider that what they had to say might have been very difficult and perhaps even painful for them too.  Understand that this is what a good friend does.  A good friend is honest no matter what the cost.  

Proverbs 27:17 says, “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another”.  It is only through honest friendships that we can grow and become more.  Can you be sharpened by a friend?  Are you big enough to receive an open rebuke?  It’s not easy but the results are priceless.  A friend who has bothered to be honest with you is likely to be a friend for life, someone that you can always count on when you need to know the truth about something. That brings me to another question, what sort of friend are you?  Do you love someone dearly but have kept that love hidden?  Do you take time to consider your words before you speak to a friend ensuring that what you say is honest?  Are you willing to offer the truth to your friend even if it might hurt them?  Mull over these questions and take time to be honest with yourself about the sort of friend that you are. 

You will need wisdom though; some friendships are too new or too fragile to handle the raw truth.  Take time to plan how you will present the truth to your friend.  It shouldn’t be mean or unnecessarily harsh and should be wrapped in love and compassion.  If you truly love your friend, always be honest but take care in how you present the truth to them.

One of the best methods that I have come across is the build – break – build method.  Try to sandwich the negative between two positives.  There is always something good to say about someone, no one is all bad.  Take time to build the person up, especially if you know them to be sensitive.  Reassure them of your love.  Offer a loving touch or a hug before you get into the difficult stuff. 

Once you are into the ‘break’ part of the conversation make sure that you are not beating around the bush.  Get to the point and make the point clear.  The last thing you want is for your friend to feel your disapproval but not really know why.  It would hurt her more to have something vague thrown at her.  Make sure you are direct and specific using very intentional key words in your conversation.  If she has hurt you express your hurt honestly.  If she has a blind spot about something in her life make sure you let her know that you have noticed something that perhaps she has missed.  Keep it simple.   

Finally, end off on a positive note so that she is assured of your love for her and knows that what you said was only for her benefit or for the benefit of your friendship.  It is possible that she might need time to process the truth so let her know that you are happy to talk about it some more at another point if she needs to.  Also, ask her for feedback.  Find out how she feels about what you said.  Give her the opportunity to disagree.  It doesn’t matter if she is right or wrong; allow her the freedom to retaliate if she needs to.  Don’t hold it against her, most of us don’t take truth or hurt very well.  Give her some grace as she might not take it very well.    

Another possibility is that you have made a mistake.  Consider that you may have misunderstood her actions or intention.  Factor in that you may not have seen the whole truth.  Take into account that you could have made a mistake.  Give her the opportunity to tell you something that you might not want to hear.  There are many things to consider when having this sort of conversation but if you true desire is to be an honest friend then no matter what happens, you will grow from it.

You could lose a friend by being honest.  Not everyone can handle the truth.  Some people don’t value the truth.  There are even those that prefer superficial flattery to a deep and meaningful friendship.  You are only responsible for being an honest friend. 

Find out more about Being a Friend here or about using our material to host your own Girl's Night here.


  1. This is very timely for me. I have two friends in the midst of a difficult situation...praying that honesty and a pure heart wins out over feeling attacked. This is great advice and I agree that calling people out on things can be difficult but so rewarding as your friendship truly deepens. Found you on the hop! Now following via fb.

    1. Angela10.7.12

      Hi Kathryn, it's lovely to hear from you and I am glad you found this post helpful. xxx

  2. Thank you for sharing this - it's amazing how God moves - he has been giving me this verse all week Proverbs 27:17 says, “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another”

    1. Angela21.7.12

      Wow isn't it wonderful when that happens :) May God sharpen us both :) xx

  3. Angela,

    Great post and so full of godly wisdom! Using discernment and extending grace is key to having a full and lasting friendship - one which is trustworthy! Thanks for such a thoughtful and comprehensive look at true friendship from a Godly perspective.

    I'm also a fellow Ruby for Women blogger girl. :)

    1. Angela21.7.12

      It's lovely to have a new bloggy friend. Thank you for visiting King's Daughters :) xxx


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Hope's Journey

"There was a time when all I wanted was to die but now that I have tasted life I really don’t want to die until I have truly lived!" Hope's Journey is a heart wrenching account of Angela's struggle with depression and suicide.   "This book is helpful for people that are going through tough times as well for those who are trying to support them. It gives valuable insight into the feelings experienced in the midst of the situations as well as the tools Angela used to find her way through them. The tools are useful for anyone trying to find hope in dark situations, whatever they may be, and are helpful for leading a stronger, more balanced life." Ali Kirkwood  Available at: | | Kindle StudyGuide: | | More Info  Contents: Introduction Suicide Eat, Sleep & Exercise Have a Checkup First Things First Make Hope Make List Tell Someone Choose Your Friends Understand Hormo

Conference Feedback

We had a beautiful day together on 8th September, thank you so much to you all for your incredible support and prayers. Feedback and testimonies have already started flooding in, have a read of some of them here . Also, keep an eye on our YouTube page as we update it with the speakers messages and conference highlight videos. We had the stunning Instruments of Praise gospel choir lead us in worship and it was truly heavenly. We also had Daughters of Davis who absolutely blew us away with their fantastic acoustic folk/soul vibe. Our Women in Business section was a real treat with stalls offering all sorts of beautifully displayed goods. Jill Chitty from the Entrepreneurs Circle spoke to the women in business offering practical tips for business growth. Other breakout sessions included a Hope for Justice talk by Naomi and Cynthia shared her testimony of life as a Samburu woman . Molly Catherine Beebee from Cirencester Creative Dance Academy dazzled us with

Secure on the Rock

Every little girl wants to know that their daddy thinks they are beautiful! As we grow older that need doesn’t change, but what if your daddy didn't call you beautiful? What if he hurt you and did things that he shouldn't do?  How can you feel beautiful or believe that your Father in heaven loves you when you have no idea what that means?  Secure on the Rock is an emotional roller coaster ride through Angela's experiences with her earthly daddy and the security she finally found in the heart of her heavenly daddy.  Available at: | | Kindle StudyGuide: | | More Info Free Audio:  Part 1 - Insecurity | Part 2 - Daddy   Contents: Introduction My Daddy - A Sandy Foundation My Darling - Freedom from controlling insecurity My Daughters - Discovering my daddy’s delight in me My Rescuer - Being rescued by my Prince My Redeemer - Being pieced back together My Rock - No turning back My Only