Christianity 201

November 6, 2019

Deep and Lasting Friendships Don’t Just Happen

NIV.Eccl.4.9 Two are better than one,
    because they have a good return for their labor:
10 If either of them falls down,
    one can help the other up.
But pity anyone who falls
    and has no one to help them up.

NIV.Prov.27.17 As iron sharpens iron,
    so one person sharpens another.

Six months ago we shared something from the writing of Glenn Kaiser, a leader in the Jesus People USA community in Chicago which gave birth to Resurrection Band, Cornerstone Magazine and the Cornerstone Festival. Today we’re back with another one of his devotional pieces. Click the header below to read at source.

True Friendship!

Some years ago someone repeated to me what another person had stated about a third party. The sentiment was something like “He might sometimes drive me crazy but he’s the kind of person you want to have next to you in a foxhole.”

I get a long list of daily devotionals in my inbox most of which I read slowly through. Sometimes they seem to nail truth or at least open up a line of thought I find encouraging to consider. On occasion they spread open to a larger field of reality I think it good to share.

Here are three quotes on friendship.

  • “A true friend is the one who walks in when others walk out.”  -Walter Winchell

Boom. A few more thoughts on this in a moment, but I have several such friends and am SOOOOO grateful to God for them!

  • “The only way to have a friend is to be one.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson

True friendship costs and the sad truth is that plenty of people are not committed to one another enough to pay the bill.

Lastly a “Yes and No” on this quote:

  • “In true friendship, one can express anything and everything without feeling ashamed or afraid of being rejected.” -Aparna Chatterjee

I agree but counter and add that even when you do feel ashamed a true friend is one you can still express anything to and not fear being rejected.

These kinds of deep and especially lasting friendships don’t just “happen”. They take real investment of time, effort, forgiveness, agreeing to disagree but not terminating the relationship easily. Actual continual physical abuse and life and death matters are another matter entirely and certainly friendship with such a person is not what I’m taking about.

Some of us are so insecure and/or arrogant, at times we’re just not willing to build truly deep and close alliances, maybe even a sort of coalition. This does not mean full agreement in every area but enough that you still reach out, respect, actually hang out willingly with one another.

The lack of such commitment to mutual friendship contributes to extreme polarization which can and often does happen. I believe this an element of why our world is often quite mean, impatient, fractured, even brutal to the extent of breeding outright hatred in our times.

How easily do you “send ’em packing”, just dump a friend? Whether or not you agree on everything (you don’t and won’t) what sort of friend are you when they’re hurting? How willing are you to point them in directions that may bring them needed help and perhaps relief from issues they’re plagued with?

Are you simply a friend of convenience- they have some of what you want so you hang out to take not so much share and/or give?

Some of the amazing reality of God is He already knows everything about you and knows the depth, importance, right or wrong, good for you or self-destructive, He’s down with it all -and still loves you. He doesn’t always agree with your choices but Jesus didn’t come to a world of people who all full-on agreed with Him, gave/give a rip about God or even care much for others. He came for all sinners -meaning you, me, all of us!

“This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.” -Jesus in John 15.12,13

We may split from others, might run away from Jesus but He never left. While we were yet sinners… hmmm… He died for us. HE laid down His life for us. That’s the sort of friendship I’m talking about!

When nobody else is around -He is.

I can’t tell you how thankful I am for my Best Friend.

God help us learn to love and cultivate, indeed sacrifice to become the sort of friends Jesus calls us to be for others. And Thank You Lord for such friends!

October 28, 2019

Receive All That Jesus Has to Give

NKJV.1Peter.3.12a For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous,
And His ears are open to their prayers;


We return to the writing of Canadian author Ronnie Dauber who has appeared here a few times previously. She has several young adult novels and Inspirational books. Click the header below to read this one at source and learn more about her work. (Some of her other articles have beautiful graphics, and she invites readers to share links and content on their own social media.)

The Gift that Keeps on Giving

Throughout life, we receive many different kinds of gifts. Some are very useful, others are novelty and interesting, and some meet our current needs. But there is a gift that is above all gifts and that is the gift that God has given to us. His love for us is so great that He gave Himself on the cross and took on our sins to set us free so that we could be redeemed back to Him. His gift of life never ends: it’s the gift that keeps on giving.

Not only did Jesus cleanse us from all sin, but He became the Lord over our lives so that we can come to Him for literally anything and everything in life. 1 Peter 3:12 tells us that He hears the prayers of the righteous, and we are righteous because Christ has poured His righteousness over us. There is nothing between us and God now, and because of this gift of salvation, we belong to God and we can call Him Abba Father.

Blessed be the Lord, who daily loads us with benefits, the God of our salvation! Selah.—Psalm 68:19

Jesus is our Lord:

God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.—1 Corinthians 1:9

Jesus is our Savior:

Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen.—2 Peter 3:18

Jesus is our Healer:

Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; Save me, and I shall be saved, For You are my praise.—Jeremiah 17:14

Jesus is our Comforter:

Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.—Isaiah 41:10

Jesus is our Defense:

My defense is of God, who saves the upright in heart.—Psalm 7:10

Jesus is our Protector:

But the Lord is faithful, who will establish you and guard you from the evil one.—2 Thessalonians 3:3

Jesus is our Provider:

And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.—Philippians 4:19

Jesus is All-Powerful:

For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.—Colossians 1:16

Jesus is Forgiving:

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.—1 John 1:9

Jesus is our Friend:

Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. No longer do I call you servants, 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 15:13-15

The Spirit of God leads and guides us during the day and keeps us safe and quiet at night. Giving God praise and thanks for all He has done and continues to do for us every minute of every day should always be on our lips. He never leaves us; He steadfastly watches over us. God gave us the gift of salvation and this gift cost Jesus His life, but God has given us the gift because He loves us, and it’s the gift that keeps on giving.


The Voice.Rom.6.23a The payoff for a life of sin is death, but God is offering us a free gift—eternal life through our Lord Jesus