"Choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.” Joshua 24:15

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Friends and Family

Friends and family.  When I think of that phrase, I think of my cell phone plan.  The more the better. It's all good. The larger your plan, the more Friends and Family you are allowed.  According to my cell phone provider, at least. They say, "You can talk more for free." "You can text for free."  Very enticing, I'd say.  So enticing that I have 12 Friends and Family, and I love it, and I love them.

Having said that, my cell phone plan's Friends and Family numbers are not necessarily all friends and family. No, they are merely the numbers that I call the most often, the people in my life that I either enjoy talking with or need to speak with on a relatively consistent basis. It could be work, my boss, the local hospital or police station (heaven forbid!), the lawn care company. Who knows?  And, oh, yeah, I forgot the clincher....they can't already use my cell phone provider because they're already free to speak with if they are a valued customer. Ha. Gotta love that.

When I think of friends and family, I would hope some of my friends are my family and/or vice versa.  And they are.  I mean, my sisters, Bonnie and Debbie, are two of my closest friends, and yes, their numbers are listed among my 12 coveted numbers. (Neither use my cell phone carrier.) My kids are all on my plan and thus free, and I see them daily anyway. My friends, Mary and Tammy, Karen and Cathy, don't need to be listed among my 12 F&F because they use my cell phone carrier. My friend, Kathy, however, is a different story. If she weren't on my listing, my cell phone bill would have the great potential to make me go bankrupt.

When I ponder the fact that I chose my 12 friends and family that are currently on my plan, I know that I can change those numbers daily. I can pick different friends and family each and every day, if I so choose.  So much for loyalty, I'd say. But then, I remember that God chose me.  I am thoroughly blessed that He doesn't switch out my friendship daily.  That He doesn't say, like they do on "Project Runway," "One day you're  in , and the next you're out."  No, out of the hundreds, thousands and millions of people in the Universe, God chose me. Why?  I haven't a clue. Was it because of my hair. Nope.  Psalm 139:13 says that He formed me in my mother's womb before I even had hair. Is it because He knew I'd be a great student?  Nope.  If he formed me in my mother's womb before I was born, He chose me just because.  I can't say I know why, but I know that He did. It surely doesn't have anything to do with I have done, haven't done or will do. But it has everything to do with Who He is, what He's done, and what He's going to do. As the words to the song, "Who Am I?," by Casting Crowns, ask, "Why would the Lord of all the earth, care to know my name, care to feel my hurt?" I've included a link to a YouTube music video.  It's not the official one, but it's nice nonetheless.

"Who am I, that the Lord of all the earth,
Would care to know my name, would care to feel my hurt?
Who am I, that the Bright and Morning Star,
Would choose to light the way,
Of my ever-wandering heart?

It's not because of who I am
But because of what You've done
Not because of what I've done
But because of who You are.

I am a flower quickly fading, here today and gone tomorrow
A wave tossed in the ocean. A vapor in the wind.
Still, You hear me when I'm calling
Lord, You catch me when I'm falling
And tell me who I am
I am Yours. I am Yours.

Who am I, that the eyes that see my sin
Would look on me with love and watch me rise again.
Who am I, that the Voice that calmed the sea
Would call out through the rain
And calm the storm in me.

I am a flower quickly fading, here today and gone tomorrow
A wave tossed in the ocean. A vapor in the wind.
Still, You hear me when I'm calling
Lord, You catch me when I'm falling
And tell me who I am
I am Yours.

I am Yours.
Whom shall I fear? Whom shall I fear?
'Cause I am Yours. I am Yours."

 I hope that I, along with my children, choose our true friends and family wisely.  Not the ones on our cell phone plan, but the ones that we choose to fellowship with, to be united with, to chat with, and to just 'hang' with.  I have almost always had the opportunity to choose my family as well as my friends. Why? Because my family isn't local.  Thus, my close friends and church friends are typically my family. Sure, I am close to my biological family, but I don't get to see them daily or even speak to them daily.  I don't even see them weekly or monthly.  But, isn't that what true friends and family do?  We have close relationships--not necessarily long distance, but they can be.  We talk daily, get to know one another daily, text constantly, visit and fellowship together.

Well, who should my greatest and dearest friend in the entire world be? Jesus.  Do I spend as much time with Him as I do with my earthly friends.  Do I fellowship with Him daily?  Do I pray without ceasing and read His Word?  Do I do all of the talking and none of the listening? Do I write letters to Him?  I hope so.  I really hope so.  Just as our friends want to see us, spend time with us, write to us, text to us and speak with us, so does Jesus--our Ultimate friend.  He's a very patient friend, Who only longs to fellowship with us and to get to know us on a very personal level.

Wow!  Again, I ask, "Why?"  And again, I answer, "I haven't a clue."  Ha.

I hope that today you are able to spend some quality time with Jesus, your friend.  The friend of all friends. The One who sticks closer than a brother.  The One who actually chose YOU!

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