It’s such a wonderful blessing to be able to share and pray with someone you know. It’s an even greater blessing when you trust that person and can call him/her your friend.
I’ve come to appreciate the importance and value of the word “friend” and the need to use it sparingly. We have lots of acquaintances, but most of us have very few real friends. Being a “friend” makes an impact on the life of someone else, sometimes beyond what simple words can express. A friend is not one you necessarily talk to every day, or spend lots of time with. Rather, a friend is a person who “is there” for you, understands you, listens, accepts, prays, is one you can talk to freely and openly, someone with whom you can be yourself. Sometimes, you may not have talked together for a while, but once you do, it’s as though time and distance were of no consequence. This happened to me recently, when I spoke with a dear friend about some things at school and life. Just spending time together, especially in prayer, was very refreshing and encouraging.
As I thought of this topic of friendship, I began to get a new appreciation of how precious it is that the Lord Yeshua called us, those who believe in Him, His friends. In John 15:15 Yeshua said “No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, because all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you”. Isn’t that amazing? As we are His friends, He consented to reveal to us all that He heard from the Father. The Lord Yeshua chose us and appointed us to go and bear fruit so that whatever we ask the Father in His name, He may give us. It is interesting that this passage ends with Him commanding His disciples to love one another. Just as a friend loves at all times, we are to love one another.
I’ve heard it said that if a person has five true friends in life, that is an incredible blessing. We don’t have many close friends. Sometimes, we feel that there is no one that we can even call a friend. But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother, who is near to us and is alway available to us. He will never leave us nor forsake us. We can pray that God would bring us friends, who are friends indeed. He knows what we need and when we need it.
As important as it may be to have a friend, it is equally important to BE a friend to someone who needs a friend. By refreshing others, we are refreshed as well. Sometimes, being a friend requires “tough love”. But, if the love is genuine, God will prune us and enable us to bear much fruit for His glory.