Travel with me through time for a quick review of how important and how valuable is the love of a friend.
Let’s start thousands of years ago in the book of Proverbs. “A friend loves at all times.” (Proverbs 17.17)
The powerful love of a friend is with you through thick and thin; highs and lows, ups and downs; whether you’re in regular conversation or haven’t spoken in a long time – the love of a friend is there at all times.
“A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” (Proverbs 18.24)
The powerful love of a friend can surpass the bonds of family. The depth of connection and the bond of trust can make the love of a friend feel closer than a brother, or a sister. It seems that on occasion, water is thicker than blood.
“His mouth is most sweet and he is altogether desirable. This is my beloved and this is my friend…” (Song of Songs 5.16)
The Song of Songs is poem of romantic love and deep longing for one another. Interestingly enough, the powerful love of a friend is a part of the romantic love and deep longing lovers share with one another. Romantic love is a wonderful gift from God, yet the love of a beloved who is also a friend draws together with even greater desire. Yet, there is one even greater love. Listen to the words of our Lord defining his love for his disciples; for you and me.
“No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.” (John 15.15)
When Jesus wants to illustrate his love and connection to his disciples to us, he attaches his mission – to reveal the depth of the Father’s love – from servants to friends. Through the gift of Jesus, God now identifies us as his friend. Can there be a greater gift than a friend?
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