Friendship has been on my mind lately.
Specifically, “What does it look like to be a friend?”
Much of my life I’ve hoped to do amazing things for God. By this I mean, I’ve readied myself to do amazing things in amazing ways: all with God’s help (of course). Please note the emphasis on my amazing amazing-ness, and quite a bit less-so on Gods’ help.
I’ve been willing to be an ambassador for God’s kingdom, to be compelling and courageous, to speak and teach with conviction, and to somehow leave a beautiful mark on the world: all in His name (of course). I’ve even prayed for my life to make a statement, to be distinctly different, and to pave the way (big sigh) so others might know God better.
Can I just get over myself already?
Just to get the facts straight: I love Jesus, but I can also be an amazing fool (<—Kim).
God doesn’t need me to help him, um, ever. He doesn’t need me to attract others to himself, to save his souls, to speak on his behalf, or defend him in any way. Big spoiler alert: it doesn’t depend on me at all, and it doesn’t come down to me, or you, in the end. If it did – even a little bit – how could we sleep at night?
The real truth is that it’s God’s amazing and true story. He‘s the hero. He saves the day. He is compelling. He is beautiful. It’s His passion and action that has paved the way so that we might be with him in this life and the next.
So what does this have to do with friendship?
Mysteriously, God wraps us all up in his astounding story for the world. Nothing in life is random, including and especially, the wonder of friendship. God has carefully planted certain people in our space and time for a reason. He knits our hearts and lives together so that we will trust him more, enjoy him more, and know him rightly.
Q. Where is the best place to be amazing, saints?
A. Be a friend who puts her trust in the LORD.
Looking back over time, there has been wide range of people who have helped me to believe and trust in a good God, by simply being my friend. I started to make a list of their most common attributes, only to realize there must be a thousand-and-one ways God shows himself through the bonds of friendship.
I don’t usually ask for feedback on this blog, but would you take a minute and consider your friendships over the years? Who has God put in your life? What are the common attributes of those particular friends, especially the ones that have caused you trust and enjoy the LORD ever more?
Can you add your friends’ attributes to my starter-list of what it looks like to be a friend?
- She is generally cheerful.
- He speaks truth with gentleness and care.
- She is not demanding.
- She doesn’t need you-and-a-movie, or you-and-a-party.
- He gives you the benefit of the doubt.
- He encourages you to forgive; reminds you of how much you’ve been forgiven.
- She helps find the good.
- She doesn’t deny the bad or the ugly; neither does she despair it.
- She leaves you with fresh hope.
- He introduces a new perspective.
- She thinks you’re beautiful.
- She is not easily offended, alarmed, or provoked.
- She speaks respectfully of your spouse, and hers.
- He defends those who aren’t in the room.
- He is not afraid of tomorrow.
- Her first response is grace.
- He likes to laugh.
- She sees you for the woman you hope to eventually be.
- She makes you want to be better.
I’d love to see what you add to the list.
Peace to you and yours, through the One who has called us ‘friend’,