A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. (Pro 18:24 ESV)
The principal above is simple– having many friends can leave you helpless whereas a quality friend is helpful when you need one. We live in a day where we can have scores of friends – especially via social networking sites. With a tap on the keyboard you can ‘confirm’ a friend without even meeting or really knowing them! Why, you are even told ‘how many friends’ you have as soon as you log on to your home page, with more waiting to be confirmed! Yes – I also have these ‘many so called friends – but is this technology robbing us of anything? Can I suggest it is robbing our appreciation of what good friends are all about? Maybe we just need to be aware of its abuse so we can be more discerning. Have a think what J. MacArthur (who does not own a computer) thinks about this! “Social networking...has the potential to foster shallow relationships and detract from real ones. Instead of enhancing deep friendships, it tends to flatten out and impersonalise the dynamics of human interaction... [It] gives the illusion of knowing everyone, and yet the reality is that oftentimes no one is truly known. It creates an environment where selfish, one-sided relationships seem to flourish, and where communication is largely unidirectional, made up of sound bites instead of deep interaction. Moreover, it often distracts people from existing relationships. Instead of pouring themselves into the real-life friendships they currently have, people now spend hours with pseudo-friends online.
Having a real friend is invaluable - but it demands face to face contact, sacrifice, time and all those kinds of relational exercises you cannot do online!