The kiss of friendship can often feel like a slap in the face.
Most of us do not like to hear unflattering things about ourselves. The truth is that no one is perfect. At times, even our best friends need to tell us things we do not want to hear. An honest answer is a sign of true friendship.
Yes, people are plentiful. Many leaders, even Christian leaders, have met their downfall by surrounding themselves with people who only tell them what they want to hear. It is a rarer occurrence to find a subordinate who will tell you the truth no matter how uncomfortable it may be. Flattery, though seemingly positive, is not given to build-up the person. Its purpose is to win favor for the flatterer. Sweet talk is a self-centered activity.
An interesting contradiction exists. Those who fawn over us to our faces—but who feel slighted—will be the first to reveal secrets about us behind our back. Such people show their true colors. If their support doesn’t bring the self-promotion or recognition they seek, their advocacy will turn to detraction in the blink of an eye.
Messages we do not want to hear are not from people trying to win a popularity contest. Your friends may be people that make you feel uncomfortable—or even irritate you at times. But remember, wounds from friends are better than kisses from enemies.
Discern who your friends are and accept their kiss of friendship.
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