>What a Friend We Have in Jesus

>I really had a lot of fun playing father Abraham during Sunday’s worship service. As we greeted one another following worship, several of you commented on my beard. Apparently, I don’t look good with a beard. It’s a good thing I made a pact with a friend that she will come and shave my beard if I am ever unable to groom myself. She’s also going to make sure that my gray hairs are colored regularly. I’ve agreed to do the same for her if ever the need should arise.

The pact may be vain, but it’s the sign of a true friend that we would be willing to do this for one another. It’s funny that the keynote speaker at the Southern Illinois Women’s Retreat on Saturday, Rev. Katherine Bryant-Graves said that she has a similar pact with a friend. Saturday’s retreat was all about Building Forever Friends.

Friends are those who know us as we are. They are compassionate, loyal, hold our secrets, share our devotion to God, and treat us with respect. We share laughter and tears. As Katherine reminded us, friends are the ones we meet up with to catch up on life, then we call each other to talk about the things we didn’t get to talk about when we were together. Time seems to fly when we’re with friends.

It takes time to be a friend. If time is money, we have to be willing to invest our time and ourselves in our friendships. We have to intentionally carve out time in our busy schedules to be a friend.

So, it is with our Divine Friend. There are so many hymns that we sing about Christ as our friend – What a Friend We Have In Jesus, There’s Not a Friend Like the Lowly Jesus, For the Beauty of the Earth, Jesus, Lover of My Soul, Tell It To Jesus, I’ve Found a Friend. Those are just a few of the hymns which name that we have a great and perfect friend in Christ. Just like with our earthly friends, we must invest time with our Heavenly friend. You might ask Christ, next time you talk to Him, who am I that you call me friend?

Now, I have the song by Israel Houghton “I Am a Friend of God” stuck in my head:

Who am I that you are mindful of me?
That you hear me, when I call
Is it true that you are thinking of me?
How you love me, it’s amazing

I am a friend of God
I am a friend of God
I am a friend of God

May you find richness in the time you invest in God,
Rev. Tracy


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