I Blog For Books

19 January 2009

Hooray for Friendship!

What is a friend? Why are friends beneficial? My buddies at dictionary.com define friend as "a person attached to another by feelings of affection or personal regard." I define a friend as someone who knows me with all my quirks and likes me anyway. (written 15 Sep 07)

Who is your "best friend"? Have you been friends for a long time, or is it a new and developing friendship? Sometimes between two people, there is just a 'click'. I believe that people are in our lives when and where they are because they are meant to interact with you at that particular point in time. I have friends that I've known since childhood, and friends that I've met in the past year or so. Each of them holds a special place in my heart, and our friendships are different. Consider the person you call your "best friend." Why define them that way? To me, it is the one person, that no matter the reason will be there for me and I can depend on that. I have some very good friends, some friends, and some acquaintances. No negativity is intended in the categorization, simply that they each fill a different need for me.

One thing that I have learned since renewing my relationship with Christ is that He will never leave me. Even when I turned sideways and didn't have Him as the forefront of my life, He never left. He was always there, just waiting for me to say "Lord, please take me back." How remarkable a truth is it to know that our God is so loving and forgiving? A few days ago, my friend Allen wrote in his devotion: "Lord, thank you so much for forgiving me and for giving me another chance." God is awesome! If we but ask, forgiveness is ours!

In 1855, Joseph M. Scriven wrote a hymn to "comfort his mother." Think of these words:
What a Friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear!What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer!O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear,All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.

Look at the third and fourth lines of this first verse: " ... oh what needless pain we bear, all because we do not carry everything to God in prayer." What a statement that makes! Our God willingly relieves us of our burdens! All we have to do is ask? What does that say of the depth of His feeling for us? That we are everything to Him. Wow. To God, I am important! He will relieve me of my burdens if I but ask him to!

It does not say (nor do I think it is intended to mean) that we will not have times in our lives that are less than peaceful, nor that we will never bear pain. It simply reminds us that there IS a relief for us. His name is Jesus. If we call upon Him, our friend will be there. Anytime, anyplace, for any reason ... if we but ask and believe.

God, thank you for being my friend. Thank you for saving me by your grace, for letting me know that I am important. Thank you for showing me my own worth, and the meaning of friendship. It is by your love and forgiveness that I am able to live day by day. May I never fail to glorify you.

"... Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I have learned from my Father I have made known to you." ~John 15:15 NIV

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