Thursday, 3 May 2012
"Friends are the family we choose for ourselves".
So I seem to be losing the knack for writing this... I'll have another go! Having friends is one of the best things you can have. If you have a really, really close friend, you can share pretty much everything in your lives together. Right now I have to say I'd just love a friend that close, a friendship where we knew each other so well. I have a close friend who we do share a lot with each other, but unfortunately she isn't a Christian so these are some aspects of my life I don't feel I get from her. I discovered recently that there are some things she isn't comfortable with sharing with me either as they are things I don't approve of, and so would turn to another friend. Things like that does often disappoint me when I'm not able to get the most out of friendships as I would like. Another worry about friendship that I get is what my family thinks. I often wouldn't feel comfortable bringing a particular friend home as I felt my parents wouldn't be proud- just a feeling that you want them to be pleased with you. Thanks to the song "Jesus Friend of Sinners" by Casting Crowns playing one day on the ZEN, although I didn't get the hint from God until about 12 hours later, I realised that it's not about showing them off. It's about welcoming them in. I've probably said this before, but bearing the responsibility for your friend's salvation is hard. Sometimes there isn't much we can do except pray. Yes talking about it could work, but there has to be a balance. If we went shoving hell down their throats all the time, we'd never keep our friends. We need to be there to support and comfort them when they need it. For some people (me sometimes!) it's not easy to start making friends. This is what the note from my study Bible says: "Loneliness is everywhere - many people feel cut off and alienated from others. Being in a crowd just makes people more aware of their isolation. We all need friends who will stick close, listen, care, and offer help when it is needed - in good times and bad. It is better to have one such friend than dozens of superficial acquaintances. Instead of wishing you could find a true friend, seek to become one. There are people who need your friendship. Ask God to reveal them to you and then take on the challenge of being a true friend." I know too that many people have been turned against by people they thought were friends. It happens a lot. I don't know the situation of any of these people, so really I'm not going to offer much opinion on that. Even if we don't have earthly friends, if we struggle to make friends, or our friends have turned out not to be friends at all, we have one great Friend who will never, ever leave us or let us down. He is Jesus, Friend of sinners! "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from Christ." (2 Cor 1:3)