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Have you ever received a GLORIOUS email or letter from a friend? I love it when I get either a beautiful letter (snail mail type letter) or a touching email from a friend.
One Saturday morning, I received an early morning email from a friend saying she had the day free if we wanted to get together. I had told her there was something the Lord wanted me to talk to her about. Understandably, she perceived it as something she did not want to hear. In fact, she said, “Let’s get it over with!”
Even so, plans were made. My husband was going to be gone. She came over and as I usually do when I am with this friend, I make a list of everything we need to cover to be sure we don’t miss any vitally important conversational topics. Yes, I am a list maker — mainly because I don’t want to forget anything I want to talk about.
My friend came. Sitting on my two couches was not intimate enough, so we ended up on the floor leaning against a couch, chatting, sharing family pictures on my computer, and going through the list. She was pleasantly surprised that what I wanted to share with her was not what she was expecting to hear, but she was willing to come expecting a Word from God through me. She did get a Word from God, but not the one she was dreading me to share with her.
We laughed; we were serious; we ate chocolate cake and drank hot “British” tea. We hugged. We parted.
After an entire afternoon of chatting, laughing, and catching up with my friend, the next day I received the following email from her.
Thanks a million for yesterday, ’twas an awesome mother-daughter roll up-your-sleeves and sit on the floor fun day catching up & chowing down a great chocolate cake. We should have one more before you hop home for Christmas. Enjoy a lovely week.
That is what friends are for. To share, to encourage, to love, to give, to receive, to laugh, to be serious with, and to have fun with.
Make time for your friends. Enjoy those times with your friends and be grateful for them. And, if you don’t have friends like that, I pray that you will be able to have the courage to invite someone to share life with you.
In God’s goodness, I turned to my Bible reading plan today. And, guess what? My reading was about the deep friendship David and Jonathan embraced in the Old Testament. As I read 1 Samuel 18-20, I gleaned some dynamic traits found in true friendship.
Characteristics of a Good Friend
- The souls of friends are knit together; 1 Samuel 18:1
- Friends love each other like themselves. 1 Samuel 18:3
- Friends are generous towards each other. 1 Samuel 18:4
- Friends delight in each other. 1 Samuel 19: 1-4
- Friends protect each other from harm. 1 Samuel 20:9
- Friends help each other discern what is best [for each other] and then share it with them. 1 Samuel 20:12-31a
- Friends desire to spend time together. 1 Samuel 20:13b
- Anticipate through the course of a close friendship, others may be jealous of the friendship. 1 Samuel 18:6-16
And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him. Colossians 3:12-14
Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. John 15:13
Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. 10 For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Ecclesiastes 4:9-10
A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. Proverbs 18:24
O Gracious Heavenly Father, I need a real friend — someone I can share my feelings, my past, and my future desires with. I am asking you to give me that kind of friend. I need someone who I can email, call, and visit with without judging me. Let me be the kind of friend I need to be to the friends you bestow upon me. God, you are all-powerful. I know you can move friends around the world just for me if you want to. I love you and I am waiting for the blessings of friendship. In Jesus’ Holy Name. Amen.