When I think of Jesus, I automatically call Him Lord of my life! We address Him with such reverence because He is King of our lives, and worthy of everything we have and do (Revelation 19:16).
Christ is not only Lord though, He is also our most intimate friend!!!
This news brings so much happiness to my heart, and it should for you too!
“Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13 (ESV)
Pause and remember: Jesus fulfilled this very definition at the cross. In doing so He made Himself our friend to the highest degree of love ever known!
As we seek to follow and obey Him in everything, this is no exception. We are a genuine friend to others when we lay down our life like Jesus did.
So what does that look like? All of us may not have a physical cross, but there is a spiritual life-giving that needs to take place. We have to be willing to give all of who we are to our friends.
To understand this a little better let’s look at Christ’s own life. He demonstrated a beautiful example of friendship, one that we should gracefully follow.
“Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.” Philippians 2:4-7
Have a heart that seeks opportunities to bring joy, or even hope to their lives.
Something else that I think is very important is PRAYER!
Jesus prayed for His disciples, bringing them before the Father time and time again. He prayed for each and every one of us believers before His walk down Calvary (John 17).
That is so powerful!
Tell your friends you’re praying for them, and check in on them when you know they are going through a hard time and struggling. Use this as a chance to see how you can practically minister to them.
“For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Mark 10:45 (ESV)
Having the attitude of the servant, of Christ, we then can step out in faith.
He loved them to the very end. We have to be committed to loving our friend through every season. Not only that, we have to love without limits.
Maybe it’s listening for hours while your friend grieves over a loved one. Or as simple as sending her texts of Scripture in the midst of a busy week. You don’t realize what that could really do for the soul of someone you care deeply for.
He commands us to put our love for Him into practice by loving one another!!!!
Finally, we serve our friends like Christ when we speak the truth in love. Jesus was not afraid to share correction and wisdom, even to those closest to Him.
That’s so hard right? to not be scared of offending our friends?
Yet we love our sisters and brothers most deeply when we point them to Christ, even when it goes against what they had in mind for themselves! We follow Jesus when we focus on our sister’s and brother’s holiness, knowing temporary discomfort can lead to the greatest joy.
With Christ’s help, we too must build the courage to lead our friends to God and His Word, because it’s the truth that saves and heals ALL brokenness.
We may struggle in these areas, but there is good news! With the leading of the Holy Spirit and a dedication to God’s Word, day by day He can grow us in being faithful to our friends!
A prayer we all should pray:
I pray for my friend right now. I pray that you will help them with the struggles they are going through in this season. For you know exactly what they need in this moment. Draw near to them and let them feel your presence. Open their eyes, ears, and hearts to you. Help them have the discernment to hear your voice as you lead them in their next steps. Speak to them as they read your word and bring verses of encouragement and comfort to their attention. I pray that you will calm any fear or anxiety they may be feeling. Replace it with the confidence to obey your word and to trust you. I pray that your guidance will be clear to them from this day forward. In your name, I pray. Amen.