The other day, as I was going to speak for a meeting at a place called Neyattinkara, I was least prepared. That day morning the Lord gave me one verse, and that’s all. I didn’t get much details on what I was supposed to speak. I quickly got ready and while I was in the car, I was begging God to give me more details on what I should speak, and suddenly this thought came to me: “With Me”
I started to ponder on that phrase, and knew that it was God trying to convey something very important to me.
This had some connection with the verse which the Lord gave me in the morning. As I started pondering on it, I got better clarity: Friendship with God.
I listened carefully, and said: Lord! Speak, I want to learn more.
Then He asked me, Son, what are the characteristics of a good friend
I took my phone to google it out! Lord said, No! Just meditate! I will give you the points. And all of a sudden this verse came to my mind
He appointed twelve that they might be with Him and that He might send them out to preach Mark 3: 14
The Lord Jesus chose His 12 disciples for one main purpose: they might be with Him
Then the Lord said, Son, you know why I chose those 12? Because I wanted them to be my friends upon this earth, and I wanted them to be with Me always!
I quickly opened my bag, and took out the notebook and wrote the first point
A good friend is the one whom we like to be with, always! (More on this below Point#1)
Wow! The Lord was teaching me. I wrote it!
I said, Thank you Jesus. Lord, more points please!
Then as I was journeying at the back seat of the car, the Lord taught me the remaining points as well. I quickly noted it down, and by the time I reached the place, it was complete. I got little more free time there, and I quickly made those scribbled points into a 10 point sermon, and that’s how you are reading this. I was weeping out of joy, because even though I was least prepared, the Lord gave me a fresh message on ‘Friendship with God’
Yes, let’s have a quick walk-through of this good friendship. You can find a detailed video sermon on this teaching here (Part 1 is already uploaded. Remaining will be uploaded shortly in our YouTube Channel)
Abraham called as God’s friend
Let’s start with this verse
And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,” and he was called God’s friend. James 2: 23
Abraham is one of the people in the Bible, who was known as God’s friend. What a great privilege!
Where in the Old Testament (The first section of the Bible, written before Christ came) is it mentioned about Abraham, called as God’s friend?
But you, Israel, my servant, Jacob, whom I have chosen, you descendants of Abraham my friend
God addresses Abraham as His friend
Many times, we visualize God as someone sitting on a Great White Throne, like a King, and is at a distant place. It’s true, but the Bible also paints a picture of God, who longs to walk besides us as a friend.
Would you like to be known as the Friend of God?
What is the difference between “God is my friend” and “I am God’s friend”?
When I say, “God is my friend”, I mean “I need God and God is ready to help me like a friend”
Similarly, when God says, “You are My friend, it means, “God needs you as His companion and you are readily available for God at any time! Isn’t it amazing? (We will discuss more on this below)
God is my friend is the first level of friendship with God, and we love the friendship of God
But the next higher level is when God says You are My friend. That is a great privilege! Abraham got that privilege, and we too can!
In other words, friendship with God is most exciting when it is a two-way friendship. God has been your friend for long, but are you an available friend of God?
10 things to note when God becomes your best friend
The following points are applicable when God becomes my friend. Let’s see one by one
1. You will love to be with Him always
Good friends love companionship. They love to spend time with each other. If God is truly your friend, then you will love to be with Him always. (We already discussed this in the intro portion)
Point to ponder: Do I really enjoy the companionship of God? How do I spend my free time?
2. You will blindly believe Him
If God is your friend, you will not doubt Him. As it is written about Abraham: Abraham believed God
23 And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,” and he was called God’s friend.
You won’t have a second question. You will simply believe what God tells!
Point to ponder: Do I blindly trust God and His words? Do I believe God without even 1% of doubt?
3. He will tell you everything
If God is your friend, He will not hide anything from you. He will plainly tell you before it happens.
When God planned to punish the people of Sodom and Gomorrah, God told Abraham about this plan.
Then the Lord said, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do? Gen 16: 17
No! God loves to share with you all the plans He has for your life. Amazing, right?
Jesus also confirms this
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. John 15: 15
Point to ponder: As a friend of God, did I hear from God about His plans for my life?
4. You will do anything for Him
If God is your best friend, you will do anything for Him.
Have you noticed that, sometimes, children do not obey their parents, but if their friends ask them to do something, they will love to do it quickly. Interesting!
Yeah, that’s the power of friendship.
One day God asked Abraham to sacrifice his one and only son. Did Abraham dare to do that? Yes, Abraham was willing to do that even! No wonder God called Abraham as His dear friend!
You are My friends if you do what I command. John 15: 14
Point to ponder: If God tells me to do something, will I do that, without questioning?
5. He knows everything about me (No secrets)
If God is my best friend, He knows everything about me. There is nothing hidden between true friends. There is total transparency.
You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. Ps 139: 2
Even before you pray, God knows your needs! Wow!!
Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him. Matt 6: 8
Point to ponder: Is there anything which I am trying to hide from God?
6. You can approach Him any time for any need
If God is your friend, you can disturb Him at any time. Never will He say, I am sorry, I am busy!
No never! He is always available for you.
Then call on me when you are in trouble, and I will rescue you, and you will give me glory Ps 50: 15
Jesus tells a parable about a friend who went to his close friend at midnight for food. Read more
5 Then Jesus said to them, “Suppose you have a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; 6 a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have no food to offer him.’ 7 And suppose the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children and I are in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ 8 I tell you, even though he will not get up and give you the bread because of friendship, yet because of your shameless audacity he will surely get up and give you as much as you need. (Luke 6)
(Audacity means a willingness to take bold risks)
You will not feel shameful to bug God any time! 😛
Point to ponder: Do I often bug God for my needs? (Yes, you can! Jesus gave you permission)
7. You can share any problem with Him. He can handle any problem of yours!
If God is your true friend, you will share all your burdens, worries, anxieties and problems with Him. And He is faithful enough to help you out.
6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Phil 4: 6, 7
Point to ponder: Do I discuss all my problems with Jesus?
8. There is no need to fear because there is abundant love
If God is your true friend, you will never be afraid to go to Him. Even if you have made a mistake, you will never fear to go to Him and ask for forgiveness. Because you know that God loves you so much.
There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. I John 4: 18
Adam, when he sinned, he ran away from the presence of God. But when Peter sinned, He repented and wept and Jesus saw His repentant heart and had mercy on Peter.
That’s the difference.
Point to ponder: Do I run away from God when I make a mistake or run towards God for help?
9. One look is enough. No communication gap
A friend understands your gestures. Sometimes even a look or a change in facial expression is enough.
When Peter denied Jesus, He looked at Peter from a distance. And that was enough for Peter to remember the words of Jesus and He went out and wept
The Lord turned and looked straight at Peter. Then Peter remembered the word the Lord had spoken to him: “Before the rooster crows today, you will disown me three times.” And he went outside and wept bitterly. Luke 22: 62
That was the kind of friendship Peter had with Jesus. One straight look was enough.
Point to ponder: Am I aware that the eyes of God are looking straight at me when I am alone?
10. You will even dare to die for Him
True mark of a true friend is that he will be willing even to die for his friend.
Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. John 15: 13
Jesus demonstrated His love for us by dying on the cross for our sins. What a powerful friendship!
Point to ponder: Am I willing to risk my life for Jesus?
One assignment for you!
If God is your friend, He will do all these for you. True!
Now, I just want you revisit all the above points and imagine God is considering you as His own friend. Can you fulfill all these to God as His friend? I would like to know your thoughts on this.
One example: Point #10. God proved His friendship with you by dying for you. As God’s friend, I should be willing to die for God.
Similarly, could you please share your favorite point below as a comment. I am eagerly waiting for your comments. Thanks in advance