Tuesday, May 5, 2009

To Be a Friend

Why can I not always be there for my friends? Am I doomed to fail as a friend? What is a good friend? Am I afraid to trust people? What is God doing? Is He using me in my friend’s lives to prove that you cannot rely on people? Why do my actions not follow my intentions? I need to try harder. I cannot try harder, I have tried that before. What is holding me back? My immaturity? God? Or just human limitations?

I know that God is in control. I know that I am letting my friends down, people that I love. I know that God is using me, but He uses Satan too. Yep, that is exactly how I feel: Used. Am I supposed to be grateful for being used to disillusion people that try to trust me?

All these thoughts have been churning in my mind the past three months. I talked to God about it. I knew He was up to something. He did not give any definite answers. Every now and then, I thought He might have but the more I grasped at it the less stable it became. Waiting again . . . I was frustrated. Some people have said that I am a patient person but I have noticed it is only the ones who have not spent much time around me. God just kept churning, until the real question solidified and came to the top like fresh butter still floating in cream.

The real question was this, “Can I trust God?” I really thought that this question was all settled. My goodness! It has been asked and answered often enough. Thank God that He really is patient; He never gets tired of answering this question. I begin to think that He brings it up and presses it out of me because He actually enjoys answering it. In fact, I know that the question originates in Him, “Lauren, did you know that you can trust Me in this situation?”

When He pressed me to admit that I felt used, as in “used and abused”, He immediately responded, “I no longer call you servants but friends, for a servant knows not what his master is doing.” In case you were wondering, I was not comforted by this at all. I replied to this divine revelation with the all encompassing, “Whatever.”

So God kept churning. I wonder what the rest of that verse says. Does that imply that I know what He is doing? Yeah, I know what He is doing; He is using me to make my family and friend’s lives miserable. “I no longer call you servants . . .” I wonder what the rest of that verse says . . . what is the context . . . has God really told me what He is doing?

John 15:15 “No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.” This is when Jesus is pouring His heart out to His disciples, He talks about abiding “I in you, you in Me, I in the Father . . .” He talks about loving each other, He talks about the Holy Spirit. So what are You doing? “I am making them one with me. I am making you one with me. I am glorifying the Father, you are glorifying the Father. I do all things well.” Hmm. So, You are using me to . . . “I didn’t say how I was using you, I said that I told you what I am doing.” Oh! I am not to focus on how You are using me, whether it is good or bad, or even whether You are using me. I am to focus on what I know You to be doing in my life and in other’s lives. You do all things well.

Just for the record, where does that leave me as a friend? I cannot be the friend I thought that I could be. What do You say a good friend is?

“A good friend knows Me.”

1 comment:

Julie said...

Thank you Lauren.

I too know that I am letting people down. "I need to try harder. I cannot try harder, I have tried that before." That has been my exact feelings. What should I do? But I can't! I have been on this merry-go-round before and I don't want to get back on it. Change needs to happen... I just can't make it happen. Something holds me back that I cannot dispense with even if I try.

Can I trust God to work it out, despite the inner turmoil, despite the questions, despite the impossibility, despite the circumstances?

I will trust. I will focus on what He is doing right this very moment in me, for me, and even around me. I choose to trust.