Today I awoke with a stirring in my heart so I thought I’d go ponder with the Lord on a walk. Often I am caught off guard when He has something on His heart that was unsuspecting to my own. Somehow it can sneak up on you at times. But regardless…He had plenty to share with me step by step in my little wilderness closet. May you glean from the outpouring of our conversation…
I’ve had some great friends over my life. Many have left a lasting impression on my heart. Each with a uniqueness all their own. None could ever be replaced or lost without leaving a void. I have learned these are cherished gifts from my Father in Heaven. Some days I comb the landscape of my heart and remember moment after moment the laughters and the tears. The endless dates for lunch and the nights of prayers asking to see His angels..should He allow such a gift.
I’ve learned over the last few years as I grow older the necessity of friends. Christ centered friends tend to make you whole and feel a great need for companionship…a need our spouse and children can’t fill…for it’s a unique gift from the Lord…for the Lord knew we would need them on this journey we call life.
I, like many of you, have felt the sting of loss and the heartbreak of loving deeply since an early age…there is an incredible risk to giving your heart to others…yet I have been made richer because of loving people. It has afforded me the moments of holding a hurting heart on my shoulder as she wept over loss and in that moment I knew why Christ allows personal pains that would then sow a seed of gentleness for future ones in crises. For my crises became the launching pad for a ministry I never saw coming and the wisdom to say nothing while saying everything with a mere hug. I see now uniquely pained people that I can go speak to and really understand their deep ache. It has made a way for others in the wilderness. Some friends have been found in the midst of a deep valley. For on certain days we can enter a room and see the memories flooding our soul and know it’s time to sit and listen awhile
No I didn’t ever desire or anticipate the fountains in the desert would be made of tears, yet I see the same in Christ, Himself, as He wept over His friend, Lazarus. Although He knew of his coming resurrection…nonetheless grief was present in a tender Jesus at the weight of the loss to those around Him. In that moment He also felt the loss…void of future happiness that would come upon the resurrection of his friend…still the present moment held pain of heart. The man of sorrows loved deeply and is not a high priest that is not acquainted with our grief. So for us again we have an understanding Lord who felt the weight of our grief and sorrow as He bore them upon the cross.
He is quite the friend to sinners and yet a friend to His flock. Who are we that He is so mindful of us? And He calls us friend…. it must have been a cherished word to His own heart.
I have failed as a friend to many unable to be present for every beautiful celebration and I have failed much at cherishing that which was given from the heart of God or meeting the needs ever present around me… but I guess we all do from time to time and we all dearly need mercy. But today it seems a stirring and longing for deep friendships does arise in my own heart. Somehow a hint of the heart of Jesus beats within me to take care of my friends in this season.
My prayer this week which is heavy on my heart is to love well these entrusted to me as friends. To be the shoulder to cry on and the hand to hold as one walks through a valley season. To perform somersaults as one flies into her calling and jump as the #1 cheerleader…” YOU GO GIRL!!!” I long for laughter that resounds as we recount the crazy journey with Jesus and the “can you believe that?” Moments of obedience when Christ tests our faith. There is nothing quite like sharing Jesus moments with friends. It is a unique delight of the heart….Jesus must know this… I wonder as He writes the scroll of remembrance mentioned in Malachi does He also grin as we throw our head back, slap our leg, and lose our breath in laughter while we act out a ridiculous request of obedience that right near buried us? Surely He must adore the belly laughs and high fives enjoyed by His children … and those He calls friends
Let us delight in one another and celebrate the gifts given to our hearts by Jesus… for every good and perfect gift comes from above and He saw fit to create a heart connection that we call friendship
Tend to your friends… my friends… they have heart needs that only you can love them through…and the Lord has uniquely connected your hearts through His love.
May 15, 2017