A FRIEND WITH CHOCOLATE
The children’s book author, Linda Grayson, said, “There is nothing better than a friend, unless it is a friend with chocolate.” I might say, “Or one who brings you Starbucks in the morning and remembers just the way you like it.”
If you were taking out a “friend wanted” ad, how would you describe the perfect friend? Loyal? Thoughtful? Caring?
According to the Bible, a friend is someone who knows all your business. Jesus said, in John 15:15 [NIV throughout, unless otherwise noted] I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. Jesus let the disciples in on His life. He freely gave them of the information He had been given by the Father. He let them in on all His business – whether there and then on earth or coming in the future.
Through the pages of the Bible, He shares His business with us too.
According to the Bible, a friend will stick with you in tough times. Proverbs 17:17 A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity. Proverbs 18:24 One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
Jesus has promised to never leave us. Hebrews 13:5 …because God has said, "Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you." Jesus will stick with us in tough times.
In fact, He offers us rest when we are weary from the burdens of this life. Matthew 11:28 Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.
According to the Bible, friends share meals together. In John11:11 Jesus called Lazarus His friend. After he had said this, he went on to tell them, Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep; but I am going there to wake him up. Jesus said He loved Lazarus. John 11: 5 Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. On more than one occasion, we read about Jesus having a meal with Lazarus and his sisters. [Luke 10:38-41; John 12:2]
According to the Bible, a friend will die or at least spend their lives for you. John 15:13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one's life for one's friends.
The Bible does not say that friendship has no strings attached. Jesus has proven Himself to be my friend, but the Bible also tells me that friendship has requirements. Proverbs 18:24 [KJV] says A man [that hath] friends must shew himself friendly: Jesus has already proven Himself to be a friend to me and I must show myself to be a friend to Him as well. He tells me how to do that in John 15: 14 where He says: You are my friends if you do what I command.
Jesus is better than a friend with chocolate, because friendship with Him brings eternal life.
No, Jesus is not likely to bring me chocolate or a latte, but He is there to listen to all my business as I pour it out in prayer; to share a “meal” of the word with me; to carry my burdens when they seem too much to bear. He will stick with me – closer than a family member. He is better than a friend with chocolate or a Starbucks latte. He is a friend who died for you and me, and, thereby, offers us sweet eternity with Him.
In the words of the old hymn: What a friend we have in Jesus!
Triple venti, skinny cinnamon dolce latte. In case you wanted to know.
I’d love to hear your thoughts – or just how you like your coffee. Write me at Nancy@DynamicChristianMinistries.org.