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HTBABF: Don't be Present

How to be a bad friend  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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How we can be good friends

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Don’t be Present

Good Evening everyone!
We are going to be starting a new series tonight called how to be a bad friend.
Us here at Bethel Student Ministries really want to help you be the best you.
We want the best quality life for you and maybe some of you need to shed of some friends that you are just tired of.
Do you have friends you just can’t keep straight?
Steve, it’s Steve right— I know I have known you since the 1st grade but its Steve…no it Kyle… awkward.
Is keeping up with everyone around you becoming a burden?
Billy, is just do not have time for you to tell me about your parents divorce, right now, it mean it was 50/50 it was your parents or mine.
Could you use a little less drama from some of your more needy peers?
Karen I don’t care that your boyfriend dumbed you on the night of homecoming!
Are there too many dog-filter selfies on your instagram?
Show picture.
If you answered yes to any of those questions and could relate to any of those scenario— not only are you a terrible person— I have an incredible solution for you…
You want to know what to do with no good, drama filled, people named karen… YOU LOSE THEM!
Now you may be asking, “HOW DO I DO SUCH A THING?”
Now I can imagine if it took a lot of work to build these relationships, then it may take some serious work to undo them.
Look, I still have good news for you tonight. Losing friends is simple: all you need to do is be a bad friend.
Over the next month, we are going to introduce to you four easy steps to becoming a bad friend.
Tonight is real simple and you can probably put right into action before you leave youth group.
This is sure to get your healthy friendship a little rocky.
I mean look at what Proverbs says about this:
Proverbs 17:17 ESV
A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.
Now the Bible is saying that a friend loves at all times.
A friend is someone who is there for you.
“Friends Theme Song”
I’ll be there for you
When the rain starts to pour
I’ll be there for you
Like Ive been there before
I’ll be there for you
cuz you’re there for me too.
A friend is someone who is with you, for is there for you, especially in the hard times.
So, if we don’t want to a good friend, we want to do the opposite of this.
Here is a tip on how to be a bad friend:
If you want to be a bad friend.... DON’T BE COMMITTED.
This means you should not be there for them in any way.
Let’s break this done in 3 ways.

Don’t be there Physically.

Wherever they are, don’t be.
You can sit with others at lunch
Forget to meet up with them to play ball after school
OR Even stop going out to places you usually hang out.
Just try your best to never actually be around them.
UNLESS— you want something from them.
I mean some of our friends have cool stuff right!
I mean use that Nintendo Switch as long as you can, or score a ride in their prom group’s limo
Once you’ve gotten what you need go right back to ghosting them!
OR Even leave them on read as you are texting!
Now, I understand, some of you may have classes with your soon to be ex friend.
You can’t help it, I mean they followed you into the class you can’t help it.
Well you need to go to the next level then.
Which is to not be there Mentally.

Don’t be there Mentally

Here is a brilliant piece of piece of psychology to use against your soon to be ex-friend:
If you aren’t able to become non-existent to them, then don’t acknowledge their existence.
Don’t answer text, hold doors, or ask them what they did this weekend.
I don’t care who asked you to homecoming.
I don’t need to hear about your game, you ride the bench anyway!
WHY ARE YOU EVEN TALKING TO ME!
Feel free to use those phrases to get your point across
The real goal is to practically give them the silent treatment, but don’t withhold your word entirely....yet
Physical and mental absence are great, but nothing works better than this last step.
I must warn you, though, it’s pretty vicious, and there is almost no turning back from it.
To really push someone away, i suggest neglecting them… Emotionally

Don’t be there emotionally

You need to let them clearly know that you have no intentions to care about their well-being.
the second you sense them trying to talk about their problems, say things like:
I think you are making this all up in your head.
Are you always this needy for attention
You’re really bringing down my mood with all this depressing garbage.
I don’t care! Bug someone else with your problems.
These will make sure that you not only get rid of this person, but you will build a reputation that you are not a person to be sought after when it comes to friendships.
Isn’t that really what we’re after here?
[STOP SARCASM]
I know it’s been funny to hear me say these things, and I hope you know I joking and I do not suggest behaving like this.
But maybe you have been on the bad end of some friendships like we mentioned.
Or maybe you have done some of those to some of your friends or i guess they would be former friends.
I know I have been treated badly by people I called friends; because it was better to be in with my group of “friends” then to be on the outside.
And I know I was a bad friend to friends that would have been good friends to me.
STORY OF ME BEING A BAD FRIEND
College Drew— Jared and I were jerks
In this world we need each other.
There are times trouble, or as the puts it, times of adversity.
Life has a way of standing against you at times, and that’s what close friends are for— not just when life is easy and fun.
We are called to be friends who are not shallow and only look out for ourselves, or turn and run when things get sticky.
Jesus himself said in:
John 15:13 ESV
Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.
I am not saying you need to take a bullet for someone, but it does mean putting your own desires to death, to be unselfish.
Friendship is a two street, and sometimes we get caught thinking it a one way street that revolves around me!
Sometimes, the things we want are not just different from what are friends would like but can often be the exact opposite.
Here is what I mean by that:
Maybe one of your friends wants to get together with you, but you decline because you would rather do your nails, or play video games.
On the outside— not a big deal, you weren’t feeling it.
But what if they just needed to get out of their house?
What if they just really needed someone to be around that wasn’t mom and dad.
Another Example:
We all like to be in control, so it tends to come pretty easy for us to direct the conversation.
We talk about ourselves and our interest without reaching into the world of our friends.
It goes a long way if you let someone else direct the conversation.
Ask questions, and for the love stop thinking about the next thing you are going to say and just listen.
listen, listen, listen and then speak; and there is a reason listen is mentioned three times, because it is three times more important than speaking.
Let them share about their favorite book, tv show or movie.
Last example:
We all have friends who are going through some stuff.
Mom and Dad are calling it quits, they just got a rejection letter from the school of their dreams, they have been stood up by that guy or girl of their dreams, they got a bad grade, they took a hard lost and let the team down.
I know that when people start to share their struggles and emotions it can be overwhelming and at times it might be uncomfortable.
But here is the truth, that is your friends reality.
And what they are looking for is exactly what you are looking for when your crap hits the fan too.
Someone you can trust.
Someone to just be present
Someone to help guide you
Someone to encourage them
Someone to tell them, yeah, that stinks, and I am sorry.
Are you really going to shut your friend down because you draw the line that says you don’t deal with that stuff.
Having friends are messy.
They take time, and energy, and if you are not willing to be there for them through the crap as much as you are there for them when they are fun and goofy and making you laugh, then you are not a true friend.
In the Old Testament we see probably one of the best displays of friends in scripture.
So instead lets look at how Jonathan was present for David.
Just a small back story, David was not king yet, he was in line to be king, but not yet king.
David served the king at the moment named Saul and Saul was not a good friend, but Saul’s son Jonathan was a good friend to David.
Now, David was this mighty warrior fro King Saul and Saul was just a little crazy towards the end of his days.
Now the story we are looking at tonight, we find that David has fled from Saul.
Because Saul was trying to kill him.
not one, or twice but four times.
I don’t really know who the crazy one here is.
It is clear Saul was trying to kill David, but David may did you allow him four chances?
Anyway!
is what we are going to look at, we are not going to read all of the passage but we are going to look at David and Jonathan friendship.
David has left King Saul, who was trying to kill him and he goes to his friend Jonathan.
Just like you do when stuff is going down in your life, you go to your friend and say YO LISTEN UP!
Jonathan was there physically for David.
In our friends we also need to be physically there for our friends, when stuff is going on they are going to need someone to talk too.

Be there Physically

1 Samuel 20:1 ESV
Then David fled from Naioth in Ramah and came and said before Jonathan, “What have I done? What is my guilt? And what is my sin before your father, that he seeks my life?”
1 Sam 20:1
disconnect from your phone, grab a chair and look them in the eye and say, im here for you, whats going on.

Be there Mentally

1 Samuel 20:2–4 ESV
And he said to him, “Far from it! You shall not die. Behold, my father does nothing either great or small without disclosing it to me. And why should my father hide this from me? It is not so.” But David vowed again, saying, “Your father knows well that I have found favor in your eyes, and he thinks, ‘Do not let Jonathan know this, lest he be grieved.’ But truly, as the Lord lives and as your soul lives, there is but a step between me and death.” Then Jonathan said to David, “Whatever you say, I will do for you.”
1 Sam 20:2-
Here Jonathan is being a friend who is there mentally for David.
Sometimes your friend needs to vent, sometimes they need to process stuff.
David was fearful for his life.
Now i really hope you are not in a situation like this one where your friend is running for their life.
But I bet you have had to be there for your friend during a bad break-up.
What college to go to.
Should they date this person?
Mom and Dad are mad at them.
Home life is in shambles.
They are in pain.
Jonathan showed David he was there Physically and Mentally for David.
And here is the rest of the story, you see they come up with a plan.
David was suppose to be at this feast with the King, but he was not going to go, because four times he had escaped death, and he didn’t want to keep testing his fate.
So in order to test King Saul’s true intentions because Jonathan was on the fence about his dad trying to kill his best friend.
1 Samuel 20:30–33 ESV
Then Saul’s anger was kindled against Jonathan, and he said to him, “You son of a perverse, rebellious woman, do I not know that you have chosen the son of Jesse to your own shame, and to the shame of your mother’s nakedness? For as long as the son of Jesse lives on the earth, neither you nor your kingdom shall be established. Therefore send and bring him to me, for he shall surely die.” Then Jonathan answered Saul his father, “Why should he be put to death? What has he done?” But Saul hurled his spear at him to strike him. So Jonathan knew that his father was determined to put David to death.
1 Sam 20:30-
Well it turns out that Saul was trying to kill David, and Jonathan realized it and he alerted David, which is also a trait demonstrated by Jonathan.
Jonathan was suppose to be the next king.
Little side note: If you know someone is going to get hurt and they are your friend, it may be a good idea to let them know.
Anyway, you see that now Jonathan was going to inform David of Saul’s true intentions.
1 Samuel 20:41–42 ESV
And as soon as the boy had gone, David rose from beside the stone heap and fell on his face to the ground and bowed three times. And they kissed one another and wept with one another, David weeping the most. Then Jonathan said to David, “Go in peace, because we have sworn both of us in the name of the Lord, saying, ‘The Lord shall be between me and you, and between my offspring and your offspring, forever.’ ” And he rose and departed, and Jonathan went into the city.
1 Sam 20:41-
Jonathan was there for David Emotionally
We as friends need to be there emotionally as well.

Be there Emotionally

Jonathan told David the King’s intention and maybe he even mentioned that he had a spear thrown at him as well.
They wept together, they hugged, and Jonathan encouraging words and then they departed.
Sometimes you are going to have friends who just need a hug and you as their friend need to be there for them.
THIS CAN BE EXHAUSTING
I had a friend in college who was emotionally exhausting, I love him to death, but he drained me.
But that did not stop me from telling him hard truths, and loving on him when he needed it.
Friendship is hard and at time you are going to lose friend that you invested a lot in, and that stinks, it is a huge bummer, find the friends that care for you, and are there for you physically, mentally, and emotionally.
But you also need to be a friend that is present, by being there physically, mentally, and emotionally.
Let’s Pray
QUESTIONS
1. When was the first time (that you can remember) that you were betrayed by a friend?
2. How does it feel when someone pushes you to the side in a relationship? What message does it send?
3. What are the different types of ways someone can be absent in a friendship?
4. In what ways are you guilty of not being a committed friend?
5. What specific changes do you need to make toward which friends in order to be “a friend at all times”? Make a commitment to righting that wrong this week.
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