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Our Closest Friend

"Good books, like good friends, are few and chosen; the more select, the more enjoyable," Louisa Mae Alcott said.  Friendships don't just happen.  Usually, they are forged between people who enjoy the same pursuits and have similar tastes.

When we marry, our bond with single friends is no longer as close, even when we still like them.  Our marriage changes the interaction.  We become closer to married friends than when we were single.

The same sotr of thing may happen in our spiritual lives.  When we come into right relationship with God, all other friendships are affected.  Our closeness with people who walk with God may be strengthened while others friendships may wane.  The rock of a new relationship with God, tossed into the pool of our lives, causes ripples and waves, making the reflections of other's lives on our own to waver and dance.  Once our relathioship with God is made right, what criteria can we use to forge new relationships and strengthen old ones?

Loyalty.  "The proper office of a friend is to side with you when you are in the wrong.  Nearly anybody will side with you when you are in the right,"  (Mark Twain).  A true friend will stand with her companions even when they in trouble.  It doesn't mean that she agrees with what the friend did; only that she is fiercely loyal to her friends.

Leadership.  Of course, we need to maintain friendships with our old buddies, but the leadership may have to change.  Before, we might have been a follower, doing whatever our friends chose for the group to do.  Our new close relationship with God may caution us about going some places and doing some of the things we did before we knew Him.  Whose leadership will we follow --  our old friends' or God's?  We may need to lead our group to help steer unbelieving companions into activities that please God.

Love.  I have old classmates who, even after a long separation, take up our conversations where they left off.  Love's bond between fast friends is strong enough to weather any storm, able to take the buffeting of any gale.  We will speak to unbelieving companions about their relationship with God, not in a preachy way, but out of love and concern.  Although accepting Christ as Savior is a personal decision, and we can't force them to make peace with God, we can love them and hold them dear to our hearts before God's throne.  Love is shown in expressing true concerns for our chums.

Once in awhile, we may have to make a choice between our friends and God.  Even though we may experience the pain of rejection by our closest friends, our bond with God will be deepened and strengthened.  Our fellowship with Him will be sweeter than ever before.  He will become our closest Friend.


Anonymous said...

Well said, Sylvia.

Cecilia Marie Pulliam said...

A truth we often don't want to accept. God wants to be the most important thing in our lives. As you pointed out, sometimes we must make painful choices in order to remain God's friend. But, we know that choice is never wrong.

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