Friends can hurt friends because they’ve been vulnerable with each other by sharing their deepest thoughts and insecurities. In the Bible, it says a friend sticks closer than a brother. When friends are that close, they are close enough to hurt each other.
Sometimes this hurting is for our own good. They can see ways in us that need straightening up, or things we need to let go of. The way they choose to bring correction is as unique as our friends. I have experienced that even though I know they are right, it still hurts.
As a writer, I have the unique experience of working with friends who have also become my editors. Some are going through a book I am writing. They are critiquing and giving feedback. Some of the best feedback has been the hardest to digest and listen to. I have been hurt in a good way. Because of their candidness, I am growing as a writer. I have been blessed by their encouragement and stretched by their critique.
Another way we may be hurt is by the betrayal of confidence. This hurt is harder to digest because trust has been compromised. What can you say to a friend who has gossiped about you? This hurts to an intense level. Prayer, forgiveness, and reevaluation of the friendship are needed.
Our friend’s weakness can be frustrating. For example, friends with organization issues like being late, canceling time together, or forgetting promised favors or items need our prayer.
There are many reasons we need to pray for a friend who’s hurt us. I’ve listed only a few, but the list is endless. So how do we pray for them?
Confess your pain
Tell God about your pain. Let Him know how it hurts and why it hurts. Talk about your disappointments and fears. God is trustworthy, and He cares.
The Lord is near to the brokenhearted, and saves the crushed in spirit.
The Importance of Forgiveness
Most of the time, our friends have no idea they have hurt us. They don’t know how you feel concerning any given comment, suggestion, or action. They are not in your head. So consider praying what Jesus prayed. “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” Luke 23:34
What about a friend who has sinned or trespassed against you? The word trespass means an unlawful act committed on the person, property, or rights of another, and it can also mean an unwarranted infringement. Has your friend acted against your personhood, property, or your rights? Or maybe it was an unwarranted infringement. Jesus has some direct words about forgiving them.
Look at this section from the Lord’s Prayer:
Forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us.
And don’t let us yield to temptation, but rescue us from the evil one.
If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you.
But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins .
Matthew 6:12-14 NLT
We need to be prayerful when a friend has hurt us. Most know that we need to forgive our friends but when things go wrong in our relationship, do you know you are being tempted by the evil one to not forgive your friends? Satan does not want you to have solid friendships. He leads you to turn your back on them by not forgiving them. Satan also knows that if you don’t forgive your friend then God will not forgive your own sins. So let forgiveness be a part of your prayer for your friends.
Our friendships are a refining process. When we are close we rub up against each other and sometimes rub each other wrong. As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend. Proverbs 27:17 NLT
Maybe this sounds harsh but look Hebrews 4:12 NLT says about God’s Word.
For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.
We need to be able to accept correction from our friends, spouse, and the Bible.
Sometimes I have to pray, “Lord, help me not be offended.” I think any other day, I would have reacted fine, but this day my friend’s words were hurting instead of helping me. I desired to accept their corrections and not be offended by them.
Dear Jesus, my friend has hurt me. Now I feel unsure about our friendship. Please heal this pain. I use your words, Jesus, by saying, “Forgive them, for they know not what they do.” I don’t think my friend knows she has hurt me. I choose to forgive her. I don’t want to yield to Satan by not forgiving her. Help me accept correction and avoid getting offended. May I be sharpened by my friend and the Bible so I can continue to grow in righteousness. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Communicate with your Friend
Once you have prayed for your friend and your relationship. Talk to them about how you felt. Forgive. It may not be a fun discussion but a necessary one.
Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working. James 5:16
Good friendships are vital to the quality of life and praying for friends keeps us close. Here are other blogs on the subject.
Praying for Friends
Praying for friends: Holding hands during difficult times.
Praying for your Friend’s Daughters
Praying for Friends: Who are going through Divorce
Praying for Friends: When they move away
Praying for Friends: Vulnerability
If this has blessed you consider sharing it with your friends by text or social media.
If you want to read more, check out New to My Heart’s Cry Start Here. Lastly, if you have prayer requests click below or fill out your request on the Prayer Form. You will receive a written prayer by me specific to your prayer request emailed back to you.
God bless you and your friendships-Kim