May 31, 2013

Who Are Your Friends?


"And Julius treated Paul kindly and gave him leave to go to his friends and be cared for."
Acts 27:3
A large percentage of people in ministry say they don't have a close friend.  It's true...ministry can be lonely...if you allow it to be.  

Recently, I read the verse above and was reminded that Paul had friends whom he could go to for support, encouragement, and help.  If Paul needed friends on the journey...you can be sure you and I do as well. 

You see, we weren't meant to do ministry alone.  The journey is too bumpy to travel solo.

You need friends who will encourage you.  Friends who will listen...really listen to what you are saying...and not saying.  Friends who will help you get back on your feet when you stumble.  Friends who will catch your tears when you are discouraged.  Friends who will help bring healing to your wounds.  Friends who will carry you when you can't walk for yourself.  Friends who will remind you that you matter, when you feel like you don't.

You need friends who will pray for you.  Friends who don't just say they will pray for you, but friends who actually have your name on their prayer list.  Friends who know your needs and God-birthed dreams and intercede for you in these areas.

You need friends who will hold you accountable.  Friends who will ask you the hard questions.  Friends who will go beneath the surface and help you guard your heart.  Friends who know the sin or sins that easily trip you and help you steer clear.

You need friends who will grow you.  Friends who will stretch you.  Friends who know your weaknesses and make you better in those areas.  Friends who put good books in your hands.  Friends who send you great articles they have read.  Friends who challenge you to set goals and help you set steps to accomplish them.  Friends who help you identify and maximize your strengths. 

You need friends who will energize you.  There are plenty of people available to drain you, right?  You need friends who fill your tank.  Friends whose words bring life.  Friends who help renew your passion.  Friends who lift your spirit.

You need friends you can be honest with.  Friends you can tell how you are really doing.  Friends you can go to when you are struggling.  Friends you can share with in confidence and know they've got your back.

You need friends who care about you.  Friends who care about you as a person.  Friends who value you for who you are instead of for what you do.  Friends who will walk in as other people are walking out.  Friends who will stick with you no matter what.

You need friends who will love you.  Friends who love with no expectations or agenda.  Friends who want to be connected with you, not just people who want you to help them "get connected."  Friends who want to do life with you.  Friends who love you unconditionally.

Do you have a friend or friends like this?  If you do, be thankful and cherish them.  Tell us about them and how much they mean to you in the comment section below.

If you don't have friends like this, ask God to send some into your life.  Your life and ministry will be so much more meaningful with friends by your side.

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