Thank God For Faithful Friends (Php 1:3-11)

It may seem like a great idea to achieve success immediately, or to receive all our answers at one time. But it is usually better for us if we work on things a little at a time. It seems that we learn a lesson better, and will remember it longer, if we learn that lesson over a period of time. Maybe it is just easier for us to deal with one part of success at a time or absorb one answer at a time, than it is to have everything thrown at us at one time. Waiting seems to build our trust in God. And our faith.

When we have a problem, we may wish for a knight in shining armor to rescue us from our dragons. Or we may wish for a masked hero on a horse to capture our villains. We hope for a fearless hero to instantly whisk away all of our problems and all of our cares.

But it is better to have faithful friends. We think a hero can take away all of our problems with one mighty gesture. But in reality, our faithful friends do the same work as a fearless hero. That is because our faithful friends join together to do the work of the fearless hero. Each friend has a different personality, a different background, and a different approach. What each of our friends cannot accomplish individually, they can accomplish as a whole.

If we had a fearless hero, we might be tempted to think too highly of that hero. We might actually become too dependent on our hero. But when we spread our dependence around among our friends, it is easier for us to see that Jesus is the one who is really providing the help. Jesus is the one who is helping us reach our goals and helping us solve our problems. Jesus is here for us to depend on now. And we have the Holy Spirit as a guarantee that we will be with Jesus for all of eternity.

I think it works to our advantage that we do not have any fearless heroes. After a hero's work is done, he rides off into the sunset. He has other dragons to slay in distant lands. After a fearless hero rescues you from your problems and the dust has settled, he will always leave you standing alone. But after a faithful friend has helped you put out your fires and the smoke has cleared, he will still be a part of your life. And he will still be your friend.

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