Indulgence of a problem that needs to be addressed is something that is not the mark of a true friend - or someone who truly loves you. Love by its very nature is always mindful of what is best for the one it loves. Thus true love for another will at times take on the task of open rebuke, rather than hiding ones faults from them.
God tells us that open rebuke is necessary. When David was in his sin with Bathsheba, Nathan was sent to him with an open rebuke - a correction that he needed. To leave David without such a confrontation would have been very harmful to his future. There are times when someone is doing something dangerous that they must be confronted. The world calls such things interventions, but things do not need to move into dangerous territory for a word of rebuke to be uttered. Sometimes it is good for us to receive such a word - as it can turn us from a wrong path long before things get that difficult. Such a word can bring difficulty if one does not receive the rebuke - but the other option really is not wise. We read that this open rebuke is better than love that is concealed.
Too often love is concealed - at least the kind of love that will rebuke and correct. Some dare to call such indulgence love - but when we leave someone in a situation where they continue to offend others (and more importantly they continue offending God) - that is NOT love. When relationships between family, friends, and brothers and sisters in Christ lack mutual discipline and loving correction - their love is weak and ineffectual. There is a forefearance that is nothing more than willing blindness. Such actions leave us with a conscience that continues to be concerned - and too often - tongues that continue wagging behind the scenes about our brother's behavior. Is is not better to pray through the much needed loving rebuke until it is offered?
Just a word of caution here as I close today's thought. Offer that loving rebuke - just make sure it is loving. There are those who take a little too much pleasure in giving such rebuke. Our rebuke, if done properly, should have been sandwiched on either side with deeply concerned prayer. Prayer on the front end so that we will be received and will be wise and gracious in offering our rebuke. Prayer on the back end of things is offered because we desire the work of the Holy Spirit in helping our loved one change and become more Christlike. When done this way we cannot guarantee no offense - but oh how the numbers of offended ones drop. If you have a loved one, a friend who needs a loving correction - take the time to "show" that you truly love them. This is done as you pray and cry out to God for His work in this process - and you gently and humbly go to them. You go desiring that they change - not to your liking - but in response to the call of God upon them to walk a holy, godly life.