Wanted: a good friend by PASTOR JON HUIZENGA River Rock Church Recently I heard a mom say that the nicest thing a friend had done for her was to have brought a meal over when she really needed it. Not having that one detail hanging over her head meant a lot. A friend like that is fantastic—and unusual. You need a good friend. Someone needs you to be his or her good friend. What would that friendship look like? Here is a summary of the Bible book called “Proverbs” on the subject: • Constant—“A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity,” Proverbs 17:17. • Candor—“Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses,” Proverbs 27:6. • Counsel—“As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another,” Proverbs 27:17. • Considerate—“Seldom set foot in your neighbor’s house—too much of you, and he will hate you,” Proverbs 25:17. I smile at that last one. Good friends even know when it is time to go. Spiritually speaking, Jesus tells us that the very thing that will show him to the world is our treating each other like that. (His actual words: “By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another,” John 13:35.) So, my encouragement to you is: When you’ve enjoyed your reading of the Squire, get off your chair and go be a good friend!
River Rock Church
Up with love, down with fear by PASTOR JON HUIZENGA River Rock Church “Up with love, down with fear” sounds like something my brother might have chanted in bellbottoms and sandals. I myself am not quite old enough to be a ’60s flower child. However, I’m still groovy with that phrase. In fact, I dig it. It is in the Bible. (OK, enough with the ’60s speak). Here is how God says it in the Bible: “There is no fear in love. But, perfect love drives out fear…” (I John 4:18). The love the Bible is talking about is the love that originates from God and is demonstrated when God sent his Son for you. He sent his Son, Jesus, to clear away your sin and the damage it causes to your relationship with God and others. If God loves you that much, you can trust that his love surrounds you completely. His love surrounds your good and bad, your past and future. And, it can drive out fear. I just spent a few days with my aging mom. She is beginning to have some memory issues and that scares her. She is intelligent, sensitive and wise, and she likes being so. She likes to call you by name and to remember your story. So, if she could choose how to age, she’d choose anything but an iffy memory. Please, not that! That’s a good test case. How does God’s love drive out that fear? Finally, it must be a trust thing. If God is crazy in love with her, she can trust that her future will be in his loving hands, even if it involves choices she would not make herself. If she is secure in God’s love, that security has potential to drive fear out. As trust goes up, fear comes down. I am not implying that I have that kind of trust. I would prefer that my superior strength could drive out fear. But my mom and I are trying. We are learning to trust his love. It is a love that surprisingly successfully drives out fear. Want some of that love? If I can help you search for or find it, I’d be happy to. E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call […]