Our desire or need for connectedness is expressed in many ways. It can be challenging to build and to maintain relationships with family and friends when separated by distance or circumstances! Those times when we can talk or correspond with each other bring us closer together… for encouragement, for enjoyment, to share, and to support each other. Working or serving together with others provides opportunities to deepen friendships and to develop new ones.
When my cousin and I get on the phone to each other, we usually talk for at least an hour… catching up, sharing thoughts, and lending support. We do not often get to see each other, as we live in different states, but when we do get together then we talk for hours. Close relationships are special! I am reminded of a verse in the book of Proverbs that says, “A friend loves at all times, and kinsfolk are born to share adversity.” Relationship rises above differences and hardship.
Can you imagine building a positive relationship without staying in touch with that person? What if we rarely or never really talked to them about things that matter? How would they know that we care? Without desire and commitment, there would be no way to develop lasting friendships.
The same is true with our relationship to God, isn’t it? Jesus told his disciples, “I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything that I have heard from my Father.” Can you imagine that?! I’m so glad that God wants a relationship with us! As we build closer connections to God, through prayer, our faith community, and by studying His Word, we learn more about Him. We grow in our own faith and our words and actions let others know that we care.
My prayers for each of us – busy, stressed, struggling, thankful – are that we may rise each morning and lie down each evening knowing that we have a faithful friend in God, who is always by our side. Stay in touch!
• We choose to build up or to tear down • Consider your words before you speak, and you will not lament the after • Criticizing in condemnation shuts the door on growth and grace • A careless tongue is like a roaring volcano • An open mouth without consideration often spews flames of hurt • Words of encouragement sweeten the most bitter • What you say or don’t say reveals your character • Wise instruction is a great treasure • The words of others which you eat and drink, will come back up in your own voice • Harsh words shred our soul and tear our heart • Restraint is a strength, so cover your mouth when needed • Fresh air breaths light into a day like songs of praise • Friendship and respect welcome all words shared • Give heed to the eternal Word which is full of grace and might
• Each day needs slipper moments • Rise to a new day with anticipation of good • A warm smile and kind touch bring comfort • Soft words encourage healing and rest • Protecting others is a most noble call and occupation • Reach out to others like a warm home on a cold day • Slip on true friendship and slide off falsehood • Put on that which will enrich life • Embrace laughter and silly slippers for a joyful heart • A peaceful evening of rest is a great blessing • Knowing we are useful brings contentment • The Comforter is always with us