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Friday, December 9, 2011

The Only Friend You Will Ever Need

I have been going through a really hard battle lately. The battle of loneliness, emptiness, and depression. I have felt so isolated, but it has really been on my mind to find a friend. I have friends, a lot of friends, but I don't have a friend like Jesus. You see I believe that Jesus is my friend, my very best friend, because He loves me even with all the ugliness in my life. He is there whenever I need Him. He patiently waits for me to turn to Him. In those moments of loneliness and sadness we tend to forget that we have someone to turn to. I had forgotten about this dear friend of mine until Wednesday. It is funny how God works in our lives. We think we just can't take anymore of this crazy world, we have had enough, we are at the end of our rope, and something miraculous happens. I was in the emergency room on Wednesday morning. I had the worst headache ever, I have been fighting depression and sadness and honestly just feeling sorry for myself. My nurse came in to see what was going on, and he casually asked if I was ready for Christmas. The thought of Christmas this year is almost unbearable. I told him that I was actually dreading Christmas, my daughter was not going to be with me I was going to be lonely. After he came in with my nice medicated shot he said, You know I know that you feel like you are going to be all alone this Christmas, but I hope you realize we are never ever alone. He took this paper towel and folded it in many directions and I was kinda of thinking in my head well it was nice that he said that but a paper airplane isn't going to make it feel any better. He gave me the paper towel now shaped as a house and said now you hold on to this house, you think it is all empty and lonely, but now open up the house and you will see that it is filled with something more. So I opened this paper towel house up and it was a big cross. He told me that I was not alone that God was going to be with me. Even though it hurt now, God was going to be with me. Just that realization meant so much to me that day. I have been studying about what God tells us about His friendship. I want to share that with you. I want to share that with anyone who wants to listen. Because I know that not everyone in this world is happy, joyous, and merry during this season of life. I know that there are other people out  there struggling just like I have been. So this is what I have learned.
A friend is an intimate companion or associate; one attached to another by affection or esteem.
Jesus tells us in John 15:15, "I no longer call you servants because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead I have called you friends, for everything that I have learned from my Father I have made known to you."
He also says in John 15:12-14 "My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one that this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command."
These verses tell us that we are God's friends. Jesus laid down his life for his friends. Isn't it great to know that we have a great friend in Jesus? I believe it is a great thing to know, but it also makes me think of what kind of friend I am to Him. God warns us that we can not be friends of this world and a friend to him. In James 4:4 it clearly tell us, "You adulterous people, don't you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God."
Often times we get mad at God for things that we do to ourselves. We expect God to be our friend at all times. And He is our ONLY true friend that will love us any way we are. And if we have that knowledge that God accepts us just as we are, and that He is our friend, how much more could we be blessed if we acted and behaved as friends to God. Is what God calls us to do so hard that we just can't do it? I don't think so. I think that we are so involved in the world and our lives, that we just don't have time for God. This world is a lonely place to so many people. I think it is because they don't realize that they are not alone. They don't realize that God desires to have a close friendship with us.
 So how do we get that close relationship with God? First, we have to let go of the worldly things that are keeping us separate from God. We have to repent of sins in our life, we have to ask God to come back into our life and restore what we have messed up. We have to ask for a desire and fire to burn within us to seek him. Next, we have to make time for God. That means finding time to pray, study God's word, and listen to what He is trying to tell you. It means having a worship time with God. It means finding ways to surround yourself with Godly people that will encourage you. It means making your relationship with God a priority. I have learned that when I do this in my life, everything seems to fall into place. It is very hard to stay on track though, and that is where constant prayer comes into play. You see God knows everything about us, but what do you truly know about God. If we don't take the time to learn about Him, then how do we expect to be blessed? We need to fall in love with God and maintain that precious bond. There is not a single thing that we can do, have done or will do that God does not know about, but He desires for us to talk to Him about it, and acknowledge it and seek help and guidance with overcoming our worldly desires and the stinking sin in our lives. The final thing that I think God wants us to do, is to be a friend to others. Teach them about the wonderful relationship that is waiting for them. As I am writing this I have to honestly say I have not followed this myself. But God is working on me and has put this on my heart. I think it is because I have been so lonely and sad, and God is showing me that I can have peace and joy if I fully rely on Him for my needs. We have a responsibility as Christians to reach out to the world around us. We have the power to change one person's life by taking a moment to smile at them, give them a hug, or just listening to them. We have such an opportunity in this hurting, crazy world to show them a glimpse of God, to tell of His love, and give them the best gift they have ever received. I am ready to reconnect with my friend Jesus, are you?
Proverbs 17:17 "A friend loves at all times and a brother is born for adversity."
Proverbs 18:24 "A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother."

I have found a friend in Jesus, He’s everything to me,
He’s the fairest of ten thousand to my soul;
The Lily of the Valley, in Him alone I see
All I need to cleanse and make me fully whole.
In sorrow He’s my comfort, in trouble He’s my stay;
He tells me every care on Him to roll.

He’s the Lily of the Valley, the Bright and Morning Star,
He’s the fairest of ten thousand to my soul.
He all my grief has taken, and all my sorrows borne;
In temptation He’s my strong and mighty tower;
I have all for Him forsaken, and all my idols torn
From my heart and now He keeps me by His power.
Though all the world forsake me, and Satan tempt me sore,
Through Jesus I shall safely reach the goal.

He will never, never leave me, nor yet forsake me here,
While I live by faith and do His blessèd will;
A wall of fire about me, I’ve nothing now to fear,
From His manna He my hungry soul shall fill.
Then sweeping up to glory to see His blessèd face,
Where the rivers of delight shall ever roll.