friends! why are they so important? it seems as if that is the search of everyone's heart. once again, i think back on my childhood and see myself as a little girl moving into our new home. i was four. my very first memory was asking my mom for some friends to play with. she took me by the hand and we set out in our new neighborhood to find me some friends. but, why was it so important for me to find friends? i had a sister that i could play with. she was two. why did i not see her as the friend that would always be with me and always be home when i was? the friend that would never move away or leave me for a better friend? i do not know. but, there was a drive in me, even at four years old to seek and find "friends." it seems that i would find someone to be my friend and then they would be gone, out of my life. so, i would continue my search. as i got older it was the same, finding a friend, then for some reason they were gone, out of my life. but, the desperateness of my heart to find a faithful and loyal friend to share my life with was still my number one goal. i still wonder why. why was it so important for me to find someone outside of my own family to be with? i think the answer is that i was looking for someone to want me, choose me, be excited to be with me and think that i was the best person in the world to be with. my little sister didn't fit into that category. she couldn't choose me. we were already chosen for each other as sisters by God. there was no choice there from us. as we got older, she became wrapped up in her own effort to find friends as well. and so, i began to see her step out in the same search as i was in.
i see my children in the same search in their life right now. all of them at different ages and in different experiences in their lives, yet each still looking for friends, finding them and being willing to sacrifice so much for them. they seem to be more important than anything in their lives right now. their identity so wrapped up in fitting into a group of people who want them, choose them, and are so excited to be with them every moment they possibly can. even when they get in trouble with their friends, they try so hard to defend them and make sure that their friends are not blamed. i'm guessing this is for the purpose of me not thinking bad things about them and preventing them from being together in the future. family is important to them. i can see it. they love each other. they love me and their dad. but, we do not satisfy that thing in them that longs for chosen friendship. as a mom, i wish i could pick their friends for them. i tried that already. it just does not work. i would pick the ones who they call goodie goodies. the ones they would never get in trouble with, always did the right thing, never was a bad influence, and always spoke respectfully and kindly to everyone. ok, maybe that kind of friend does not exist. or maybe He does.
as i have become an adult and have grown in my understanding of God's love for me. i realize that all that i was looking for in a friend, as a child, a teenager, a young adult and even a young married, was for someone to choose to be with me and think that i was exciting and fun to be with, someone to think that i was wonderful no matter what and would defend me at all costs, even paying the ultimate cost Himself. I found that friend, and no, it was not my husband, even though he is a wonderful friend too. i found that friend in Jesus or actually He found me. He sought me out. He chose me to be His friend. He wants to be with me all the time. His thoughts toward me are endless. His love for me in infinite. He thinks that i am fun and funny and exciting. wow! i make him smile with admiration. how could this Friend not satisfy that longing in my heart that has always been there from the time that i was a little girl. What a friend i have in Jesus. my Friend reminds me to trust Him because just as He sought me out, He is seeking out my children too. Their search for friendship will find its end in Him too. my heart is satisfied and at peace as i lean on Him to be that friend that sticks closer than a brother to me and my children. Proverbs 18:24
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