by Minister Melanie Dees Campbell
Ark Ministries Hope of the World
Our culture uses the word friend lightly. There are types of friends/acquaintances, club friends, sports friends, etc., but typical activities do not establish genuine friendships. Authentic friendships of unconditional acceptance, mature, and thrive due to a shared love commitment. God loves us and wants to be our friend. God called Abraham friend. In the book of Samuel, the friendship between Jonathan and David is one of knitted souls. A type and shadow that, like Jonathan, we can unite our soul to the Lord.
During a crisis, my husband (deceased), my best friend, got through police barricades and called my name. I turned to see him scaling an eight-foot chain-link fence to reach me. He knew who I was (knowing I would not be at the survivor center but would join the rescuers). How much more does God know me, and you?
Messiah Yeshua/Jesus rescued us, going to the cross to die for the sins of all humanity yet calls us by name. Loving the Father and us, he died proving it. Exchanging his life for ours, he sent us the Holy Spirit. We know he will never leave us or forsake us.
Yeshua/Jesus said to the disciples (John 15:15), “I no longer call you servants but friend because a servant does not know what his master is doing: but I have called you friends because everything which I heard from My Father I made known to you.” Yet his friends ran away, Peter denied him three times, Judas Iscariot betrayed him; still, he loved. Yeshua teaches us to love.
During life crises, we need to turn to his call opening ourselves to love. The song In the Garden verse, “He walks with me, and he talks with me, and he tells me I am his own,” is real. God will turn all things to good to those that love him. We will go through trials and tribulations and experience disappointments and loss in life, but we can have a friend who knows us and loves us unconditionally. “What a friend we have in Jesus,” is more than a line from a song, it is heartfelt love from the creator of the universe, for God is love.
When we communicate with the Lord, focusing the meditation of our hearts on him, we can make him our best friend, receiving shalom, the perfect peace that passes all understanding. Allowing him to lead us through his holy word, through his presence, we learn it isn’t all about us, but it is all about him. God makes his written word alive to us so we can have him as our best friend.
There is a price, a directive, to this unconditional loving friendship: it is that we are to love one another so that we bear fruit that would remain — only accomplished by doing things to please God. Let us nourish our relationship and serve our Lord, knowing we can become more than servants and have a friendship with the God of Glory. He wants to call us friends because he loves us unconditionally. May our voices join Israel Houghton when he sings, “I am a friend of God. He calls me friend.”
Blessings and Shalom