It is an awesome, challenging thought. The Lord comes to us in our friends. What we do and are to them is an expression of what we are to Him.
Blessed are they who have the gift of making friends, for it is one of God’s best gifts.
What pleasure! What healing is found in sharing a long and hearty laugh with a good friend!
When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives means the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving much advice, solutions, cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a gentle and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face us with the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.
The very possibility of friendship with God transfigures life. This tends inevitably to deepen every human friendship, to make it vastly more significant.
Let your condition be ever so extreme; human friendship disappointing you, earthly supplies failing you, human sympathy refused you, and dark despair enthroned grimly and coldly upon your heart; there yet is hope in God!
Many of your friendships grew from your need for affection, affirmation, and emotional support. But now you must seek friends to whom you can relate from your center, from the place where you know that you are deeply loved. Friendship becomes more and more possible when you accept yourself as deeply loved. Then you can be with others in a non-possessive way. Real friends find their inner correspondence where both know the love of God. There spirit speaks to spirit and heart to heart.
There is nourishment from being encouraged and held up by others when we are weak. We are nourished from feedback from friends whom we trust and who will be honest with us.
God is often disappointed that we are so busy doing things for Him, that we have no time to talk to Him… I have to guard against being so busy for God that I have no time for God Himself; and God created man for His glory…What is the ideal of human life? That he may enter into the secrets of God, and be the friend of God; and if God’s friends never visit Him, never talk to Him, even though they are busily occupied in His work, they are robbing Him.
There is tremendous relief in knowing that His love to me is utterly realistic, based at every point on prior knowledge of the worst about me, so that no discovery can disillusion Him about me, in the way I am so often disillusioned about myself, and quench His determination to bless me. There is, certainly, great cause for humility in the thought that He sees all the twisted things about me that my fellow-men do not see (and I am glad!), and that He sees more corruption in me than that which I see in myself (which, in all conscience, is enough). There is, however, equally great incentive to worship and love God in the thought that, for some unfathomable reason, He wants me as His friend, and desires to be my friend, and has given His Son to die for me in order to realize this purpose.