Thursday, April 16, 2009

Sacred Request

If you are anything like me, a major highlight of your day is when you see the following - “Friend Request!” Your excitement level can vary dramatically, though, depending on whom it is that sent you the request (there is a big difference between a good looking classmate and an old lady from church)!

But what if one day you received a friend request from Jesus himself? What if you were cruising around facebook and got a message from Yeshua of Nazareth. And although there are a few folks who have humorously attempted to create a page on God’s behalf, think about if it legitimately happened? What if Jesus actually sent you a friend request?

First of all, what would his page look like?
Basic Info
: Male
Birthday: Well, no one can decide on the exact date, but everyone celebrates it on December 25th.
Hometown: Born in Bethlehem, spent some time in Egypt early on, Nazareth is where I grew up, but the upper echelons of heaven is where I call home!
Relationship Status: People think I remained single, but I actually am married (and not to Mary Magdalene thank you very much), but to the church (although sometimes she can be extremely difficult to live with!)
Religious Views: I am a religious view!

Personal Info
: When I’m not interceding on behalf of mankind and controlling the spiritual realm, I enjoy making stuff like furniture or animals or entire landscapes, hanging with friends (the shadier the better), fishing, and the occasional miraculous healing now and again, just to keep things interesting!
Music: Nothing’s better than an angelic chorus right after someone comes to faith, but heartfelt devotion, no matter how it sounds, is my absolute favorite. Although U2 and Carrie Underwood are pretty darn good!
Books: Well I am a little biased here because I am the basis for, main character in and author of the greatest selling book of all time, maybe you have heard of it – The Bible, but I do love reading Stephen King’s stuff and the Twilight series wasn’t too bad!

Then there would be the comments, “Jesus sent you a gift: his own body and blood” or “Jesus suggested you add a friend: the Holy Spirit”, or “Right now Jesus is figuring out how to get you out of the mess you will find yourself in 50 years from now.”

Think about it , what if Jesus Christ, the actual son of God, sent you a friend request?Because it has happened. That is exactly what he has done. Read John 15:9-17.

Jesus did not come in search of slave labor. He did not come to find some pets or business associates. He doesn’t need any of those things. He came in search of those who would become his friends. And this is a big deal. It’s a big deal to be God’s friend, considering the relational history you all shared. It’s not as if you were already "buddy, buddy" with the Lord, talking all of the time, hanging out as good friends do, and then one day realized you weren’t facebook friends, “what, I’m not your friend on facebook? How could that be?” No, we were anything but God’s friends.

Colossians 1:21 – “Once you were alienated from God, enemies in your mind…”

But Jesus changed all of that. Jesus said, “You didn’t send me a friend request, I sent it to you. You were powerless to do anything about your standing with God. You didn’t like God all that much, some of you didn’t even know he existed, and even if you did, you were so far from him that friendship was impossible. But I changed all of that. I laid down my life for you, I became God's enemy so that you could become his friend.”

And don’t ever think that God was desperate and lonely and in need of friends, “Like, okay Jesus, I will be your friend already, back off! And please don’t facebook stock me now!” Jesus did all of this for you and for your good. He could continue on just fine without you as his friend, but we would be pretty hard pressed to say the same. He knew that friendship with Him and with the Father was the only thing that would ever fully satisfy the core desires of our hearts and the only thing that would enable us and free us to live now and for all of eternity.

Jesus Christ has sent you a friend request. Don’t ignore this request. Don’t be bothered by the request. Don’t be put off by his asking. Or don’t pass it off and just click accept, never to think about your relationship with him again. Recognize that the God of the Universe, the One who hand crafted you and put you on this earth for a reason, the One who died for you, the One who loves you more completely than anyone else ever could, the One we typically ignore, or blame for our problems, or worse, deliberate hurt, joyfully and purposefully invites you to be his friend.

May we be able to say, as Job did, "Oh, for the days when I was in my prime, when God's intimate friendship blessed my house".

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