Tuesday, April 01, 2008

friends don't let friends

We know the slogan over here: "Friends don't let friends" which can be for a whole host of reasons. One bumper sticker I saw from someone on our street: "Friends don't let friends vote Republican." Not to get into politics here, at all, today.

In Jesus we're meant to be there for each other, and also for those in the world. We need a humility and senstivity, along with discernment from God, to know what is best and what is needed, in any given situation. Perhaps we must major on listening, then offering some words that may be helpful. Our goal must be to help the other to Jesus, and that all of life and relationships would be seen and experienced through Jesus.

This is not easy, because we're all too accustomed to seeing all of life and relationships through our own eyes, and with our own interests in view, even if included is the interest of someone else. Instead, we in Jesus need to set ourselves to radically begin to see more and more through Jesus. Something like Jesus being between me and anyone or anything else. (from a poem of Celtic Christianity, which I can't recall, but sung by John Michael Talbot on this album; from the song, "Betwixt Me")

This will result in God being at the center of our lives, displacing us as the center, or maybe even something or someone else, in ways that are not good, since none of us are good for anything in such a place, as idols. God in Christ must be at the center and heart, and the way to do that is to help ourselves by prayer, and each other to seek to go through Christ in all of our thoughts and relationships. Taking every thought captive, by prayer and faith, to obey Christ. Not just for ourselves, but with humility and sensitivity, being open and ready with God's help to help others do the same.

What thoughts do you have to help us better understand and practice this? Or any thoughts.

9 comments:

preacherman said...

Ted,
Great post brother!
I love the quote: "Friends don't let friends go to hell." So, let us be light we need to be today. Let's share our testimony with our friends today. The greatest thing that God has given us is "today". Yesterday is gone and tomorrow is uncertain but we have today. How are we going to use it?

NaNcY said...

"We need a humility and senstivity, along with discernment from God, to know what is best and what is needed, in any given situation."

well put my friend.
there is no map...we must follow our Lord and God.
His is a living and giving Love that must be lived and given.

Kim said...

I've been told that a shortcut to Christlikeness is:

1. Identify whatever my natural response (verbal, mental, physical, spiritual, emotional, etc.) would be to any given situation.

2. Do the opposite.

In this simplistic way, I displace my own nature from the center of my universe and replace it with God's.

Example: I was in the fast lane on the freeway the other day and there were about 2 car lengths between me and the car in front of me (Yes, I was tailgating!) A car in the right lane raced up from behind and inserted itself between me and the car in front, leaving 1/2 a car length between us. Soon after it dove out of the fast lane and tried to pass the car in front. Of course it came upon a slower car in that lane.

I anticipated that the driver would try to dive back into my lane. My natural reaction was to speed up and leave virtually no room between myself and the car in front of me so they couldn't possibly get in front of me again (because I'm more important than they are!)

I did the opposite. I backed off so there was plenty of room for that driver to get into my lane. Ta daaaa!
Peace, Kim

Halfmom, AKA, Susan said...

sometimes it's awful easy to just throw topical scripture at a problem - much harder to prayerfully teach them to search and seek the God of the Bible themselves - but it seems to me that if we are (Heb 12:1,2) to keep our eyes fixed on Christ, it seems to me that our goal ought to be to help others do the same!

Ted M. Gossard said...

Kinney,
Good words, brother. Thanks for the reminder. We need to be faithful to the Lord and to our neighbor, in the way you say. And yes, today.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Nancy,
Thanks. Yes, what better gift can we give to anyone, but to point them to Jesus. And we all need to give and receive, on this.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Kim,
Yes, I know what you mean! Sometimes I've caught myself doing the same, and alot of times I'm in a hurry, in my mind, even though the hurry is unnecessary. So I've learned to back off and give plenty of room.

But yes. Just like Scripture says, We're to return evil with good. Not our "natural" fallen tendency, for sure.

Ted M. Gossard said...

And thanks for sharing that, Kim.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Susan,
Good words, and they add well to what I was trying to say in this post.

I do think this is more important, what you say, than I realize, just sitting here. As we follow the Lord and the way of Jesus, we endeavor to help others do the same. As we do so, of course we'd better stay on track ourselves.

Truth is better caught than taught. Both are needed, but particularly this kind, in following Jesus, is more of an apprenticeship kind, in the nuts and bolts of down to earth living.

Thanks!