Letter from a Friend
I would like to show a letter to you form a friend of yours.
I am writing to say how much I care for you. I want you to know me better.
When you awoke this morning, I exploded a brilliant sunrise through your window, hoping to get your attention. But you didn’t even notice.
Later, you were walking with friends, I bathed you in warm sunshine and perfumed the air with flowers. Still, you didn’t notice me. So I shouted to you in a thunderstorm, I painted a beautiful rainbow. You didn’t even look.
Tonight, I spilled moonlight on your face and sent a cool breeze to refresh you. As you slept, I watched over you and shared your thoughts, but you remained unaware of my presence.
I hope you will talk to me soon. When you’re ready. I will be near. I love you very much.
Your Friend, Jesus
Jesus is the greatest friend you will ever have. Jesus said, “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends” (John 15:13). As the song says, “There’s not a friend like the lowly Jesus, No not one! No not one!”
Anyone and everyone can be a friend to Jesus through obedience to Him. He said, “you are My friends if you do whatever I command you” (15:14). This obedience is active. It is more than just a feeling. And obeying is continuous. We are to keep on obeying Him. Comprehensive obedience is seen in the term “whatever.” “Love can be known only from the actions it prompts” (Vine, 381).
To be a friend of Jesus one must be a submissive servant. Jesus said, “No longer do I call you servants” (John 15:15a). We are both His friend and slave. A song from Jesus’ view “I Gave My Life for Thee”, says:
I gave My life for Thee, My precious blood I shed,
That thou might’st ransomed be, And quickened from the dead;
I gave, I gave My life for thee, What hast’ thou giv’n for Me?
Jesus said, “for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you” (John 15:15b). Friends know each other, but not just a knowledge of facts but a closeness which comes only through open communication. As in any friendship you first need to get to know the person better. This can be done through Bible Study. This is how we learn about Jesus. This will help us to get close to God, communicate with Him in prayer, develop faith and trust in Him.
Jesus did not choose us for friendship due to our prefect qualities but by His grace. In fact, we did not want a relationship with Him, instead He wanted one with us. “You did not choose Me, but I chose you..” (John 15:16a).
Friendships are productive. Jesus says of those who are His friends that He “appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain” (John 15:16b). The fruit we bear in this relationship with Jesus can be seen in the development of our character with the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22,23). Also it is seen in the fruit of righteousness (Heb. 12:110; fruit of the lips, (Heb. 13:15); fruit of our hands (1 Cor. 3:10,14) and the fruit unto holiness (Rom. 6:22)
True friends can tell each other anything. Friends of Jesus can ask in prayer and expect to be answered. He promised His disciples “that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you” (15:16c). He had made this promise to them in John 14:13,14; 15:7. Jesus is a friend who always wants to hear from His friends.
Genuine friends of Jesus espouse His variety of love. “This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you…These things I command you, that you love one another” (15:12,17). Earlier He had commanded them to love one another (13:34). The most powerful evidence for Christ to the lost world is the love Christians have for one another. “By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another”(Jn. 13:35)
Bill Gothard has said, “Loneliness becomes our ’friend’ when it forces us to enjoy the friendship of God as much as we would the friendship of others” (Nelson, 517). Jesus wants us to be His friend. Won’t you accept the terms of friendship and become a friend of Jesus?
— Daniel R. Vess