SOLI DEO GLORIA A TRUE FRIEND Bible Devotional CYPRESS GARDENS 5-11-16
PROVERBS 17:17 A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity.
This topic of FRIENDSHIP is very important to me since it was the reason I came to the LORD personally in 1968. A new ‘friend’ of mine saw my hunger for meaningful friendships which were not simply acquaintances from Girl Scouts, YMCA camping, marching band, or other ‘groups’ of people where I ‘belonged.’ She then informed me of how JESUS living inside of me would/could lead me into relationships which were/are rich in depth and meaning since HE is my BEST FRIEND FIRST! For, you see, He meets every need I will ever have.. He is especially near and dear when experiencing adversity.. ‘When Jesus is all you have, you have ALL YOU NEED.’ Consider these beloved lyrics we sing frequently!
‘What a FRIEND we have in JESUS, all our sins and griefs to bear… Do thy friends despise, forsake thee.. Take it to the LORD iN prayer..’ ‘Jesus is all the world to me, My Friend in trials sore; I go to Him for blessings, and He gives them o’er and o’er.He sends the sunshine and the rain, He sends the harvest’s golden grain;
Sunshine and rain, harvest of grain, He’s my Friend.’
A whole year before I welcomed the LORD into my life personally, (as opposed to simply having believed in ‘the facts’ of my need for salvation through HIM,) I needed to write an original poem about FRIENDSHIP as an English class assignment.. This is what my heart spilled onto paper..
SOMEONE ‘A friend is someone who can see just what a friend can truly be.. Someone to whom you can speak whenever you feel spiritually weak.. Someone who loves you ‘in your real,’.. who knows how you truly do feel.. Someone who cares about you in all you do… This is my friend.. Could it be you?’
This poem conveys how the LORD knew I was becoming ‘spiritually’ aware.. I’d been told how mankind is a physical, mental, social, and spiritual ‘being,’ and that we consist of a body, soul, and spirit, but had not yet been told how I needed to be ‘born again,’ by inviting the LORD into my inner person as an act of my will..
One year later, a mature Girl Scout was the one who told me how she’d met JESUS as her best friend a year earlier.. The results were obvious as she told me of an incident where she called her closest girlfriend (a sister forever in JESUS!) to come pray with her in this time of adversity.. Of course, her friend drove the 20 miles as soon as was possible to join her. I really envied her and that’s how my new friend introduced JESUS to me as the best friend I’d ever have.. and how this would allow true FRIENDSHIPS while earthbound. In I SAMUEL 20:42, Jonathan says to David, “Go in peace, for we have sworn friendship with each other in the name of the Lord, saying, ‘The Lord is witness between you and me..’
It never ceases to amaze me how in JOHN 15:15, JESUS said to his disciples, “I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. Finally, EXODUS 33:11 lets us know how “The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend.”
Lord, may we confidently proclaim, ‘Jesus is all the world to me, My LIFE, My JOY, My ALL!