A Forever Friendship

The other day I had lunch with a "long time ago" best friend!  It was great to see her and to try and catch up on all the news of our families. But when so much time has passed, and really no contact, it's very difficult to fully connect again over one meal.  You see, it takes a lot of work for a friendship to develop and to grow, and she and I had surely put a lot of time into ours- about 16 years worth.

 I met her in 1979 when I was a senior and she was a junior in high school.  We eventually attended the same church, the same university, sang together, went on college retreats, spent the night at each other's houses, and double dated.  We were inseparable. A very special friendship developed and was deeply rooted in our hearts; one that you would think would last forever.

Then, one day, I woke up and realized that the friendship we once had, had disappeared.  Because of circumstances beyond our control, the friendship dissolved. 

Sadness doesn't even begin to describe what I felt for a very long time after.  I actually grieved over the loss of this long term friendship.  Many, many tears were shed.  My "bestest" friend was gone and she wasn't coming back.  Our relationship would never be the same.

The good news is that this scenario will not happen when we have a deeply rooted, healthy relationship with Jesus Christ.  People come and go in our lives, but Jesus is a steadfast, forever Friend!
Although we move back and forth in the relationship because of sin, He's always ready and waiting to restore the relationship.  True repentance is what puts us back on track with the Savior.  As we draw near to Him, He draws near to us because of His incredible love, mercy, grace, and forgiveness. 

What a comforting thought to know that Jesus loves us unconditionally and draws closer and closer to us as we fall more and more in love with Him.  The more we understand this incredible love, the less we move away from Him in our sinfulness.  The more we understand what a gift grace truly is, the less we take for granted His grace-full-ness. The friendship becomes more of a relationship of thankfulness. 

Our relationship with Jesus Christ is one of continuous and endless love.  Real life is not a life filled with fake, temporary pleasures, but real life is the abundant life- full of the Pleasure, Jesus Christ, Who never ends and always satisfies.

Jesus, in John 15:15 says to those who abide in Him and who know Him intimately, "No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you."

Close friends know each other.  Best friends tell each other secrets and confide in each other.  Jesus has called us friends and tells us things that His Father, the God of heaven and earth, has told Him.  He has chosen us to be friends with.  What a priviledge to be friends with the Savior! Unlike the  friendship with my "long time ago" friend, my friendship with Jesus will never end.  He is a lifetime, eternal, forever Friend. 

Dear Jesus,
Thank You for Your incredible friendship.  I love being friends with You and being able to relate to You on an intimate level.  I'm so grateful for You being the Rock in our relationship and for loving me even when I fail You.  I do want to know You more, and I pray that You will help me to continue to grow in my love for You. I desire to love you more today than I did yesterday.  Thank You for bringing my "long time ago" friend back into my life.  Help us to reconnect with each other. And with You at the center, may we bring You glory, and point others to You, through our renewed friendship. Amen.

My Pleasure,