This article says that “The … number of Americans with no close friends has tripled since 1985. “Zero” is the most common number of confidants, reported by almost a quarter of those surveyed. Likewise, the average number of people Americans feel they can talk to about ‘important matters’ has fallen from three to two.”
Isn’t that sadly amazing? Even with sometimes hundreds of “Facebook friends”, many Americans would say they have “zero” close friends and only 1 or 2 people in their lives that they feel they can talk to about important matters; sad.
I’m so glad it doesn’t have to be that way for you and I.
This morning I was reading Psalm 139:13-15
You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb.
Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it.
You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb.
You and I are fearfully and wonderfully made
As I meditated on this Scripture I reflected upon the indescribable vastness of God; how He could create something as incredible as the human body, not to mention the seemingly infinite attributes of the universe.
Sometimes I try to think of what it must have been like to be Adam or Eve living in a perfect environment with bodies designed for and capable of living forever.
David (the author of Psalm 139) thanked God for making him the way He did.
Friends with Jesus
After looking at Psalm 139 I was directed to John 15:15.
Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knows not what his lord does: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.
FRIENDS. Did you get that? FRIENDS! As I considered this verse I reflected upon how many good friends I have had in my life; honestly not very many. Some of that was due to poor choices that I made but much of the reason for it is the culture that we live in and the way we are raised up in it.
Particularly in the Pacific Northwest, Americans are plagued with an independent spirit; necessary when you are crossing the Oregon Trail but not so much when you need help and look around to find you are alone.
Friends with God
In John 15:15 we find an amazing reality: You and I can be friends with God. Jesus, as God in the flesh, said that He would call His followers “friends” This word friends here means someone who is “loved or dear”.
Did you get THAT? You can be a dear friend of God who is loved by Him!! WOW! Not only that, but He WANTS to be friends with you!
How to be a good friend
So as I combine these thoughts I see God telling me that I am wonderfully made and even with my flaws, He wants to be my “friend”. Imagine that for a moment. The Creator of the universe is reaching out to you saying, I know you completely and even with your flaws, I still want to be your friend.
Jesus came to restore mankind: The second Adam accomplishing what the first Adam didn’t. How can you be a good friend to God? Simply accept the reality that you are wonderfully made by the best design engineer and Creator in the whole universe. God accepts and loves you just as you are. He has so much waiting that He wants for you.
Love others as yourself
The greatest commandment is to love God with all that you are; but the second greatest commandment is to love others as you love yourself as I just explained. How can you be a “good” friend? Love yourself and others as God loves you. I can’t imagine what the world would be like if it followed this golden rule; but lets find out.
I’ll see you out in the field
Parson Rayphe, Dr.