Thursday, October 22, 2009

Friend



Friend

Proverbs 18-24b…but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

One day, not unlike a lot of days in the wake of my father’s death, I found myself sobbing in the midst of my prayers. There was an ache in the deepest part of me. Dad was gone for good. No longer could I gain a little wisdom through a chat on the phone with him; we wouldn’t be laughing over a great meal together; the celebrations of birthdays, holidays, weddings, graduations would be lacking one essential character…DAD!

When dad was on the scene he brought some precious gifts with him—humor, stories, enthusiasm, appreciation for the moment, and love for those who were in the moment with him. These qualities, along with loyalty, faithfulness, intentionality, gratitude, and compassion are what made dad a true friend. For many who knew him, well or even casually, it seems like dad’s most precious gift of all was his friendship. In words that dad would use to describe another friend, dad was a “real pick me up.” When you were blue, or scared, or uncertain, dad was there with words that would cheer, soothe, guide.

As I sat there crying, this realization hit me hard: I would greatly miss Dad’s friendship. And I think that’s what we will all miss most of all. The essence of Dad as friend. But in my sadness, I felt a gentle tug on my heart, and I recalled words of scripture and a wonderful worship song, “I am a friend of God; He calls me friend.”

God was speaking…
“You know the way you felt about your dad? How you felt so welcomed whenever you came to visit?”
“Yes…”
“You always knew your Dad was genuinely delighted to see you.”
“Yes…you’re right. Dad’s face lit up when I came to visit.”
“Well, that’s how I feel when you come to me.”
“You do? I mean I know the scriptures say, ‘Come to me.’ But I guess I never pictured your face lighting up when I start chatting, or ranting, or praying…”
“That’s what I want you to know. My face lights up when you come to visit! I am genuinely thrilled and delight in you. You are my beloved.”

This encounter didn’t quite take away the pain of missing dad as my friend, but, you know, it helped. I am deeply grateful for that encounter that day. It helps to know I have a friend who will not ever go away.

We never have to grieve over the loss of our relationship with God. He’s right there, all the time. And He delights to be with us!

What’s your story? I think each of us “hears” from God in different ways. And I’m not saying I heard an audible voice. But I did “hear” God with my heart. What’s He saying to you today?

6 comments:

  1. When I worry about my daughter, this is what the Lord reminds me, in the words of Hannah, who pleaded with the Lord for a child:"I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of Him. So now I give [her] to the Lord. For [her] whole life [she] will be given over to the Lord." 1 Samuel 1:27, 28

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  2. Elise, what an inspiring statement. God talks to us in so many ways we just have to be aware and listen. Keep on writing these message/prayers/hopes/joys. Read you next time, Chris

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  3. to this entry I say, amen. dad really was one of my best friends...):
    Seton

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  4. When I read about your relationship with your Father it makes me hunger for what I didn't have. Please know how fortunate you were to have a friend in your Dad. My Father was not really my friend, we were usually at odds. We spent a lot of time together and we did laugh and I remember those moments, but life is a little easier/less painful that he is gone. I miss my Father, but I haven't found myself grieving his loss. I know he loved me and I certainly loved him, but there are many buts... The silver lining in this is that I hope and pray to have a wonderful openingly loving relationship with my kids. I hug them every chance I get!!!

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  5. for beginners like me need a lot of reading and searching for information on various blogs. and articles that you share a very nice and inspires me .

    ReplyDelete

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