Friday, August 15, 2008

Friends, Christ, Love, Promises, Joy

A relationship it’s like a plant that either grows or dies depending on the foundation and proper care.
Whether it is the relation with your parents, friends, co-workers or spouse, they should all be God centered to make sure they will last through the storm.

For those who know me, know that I have been single for some time now but that changed last February. I started dating my best friend. We have known each other for a while and we developed a beautiful friendship. Our center of conversation was always Christ and so we always found a way to encourage and cheer each other with the word of God.
Rapidly we learned to trust each other and we each found a person who we could share our concerns and our thoughts. We talked for hours on the phone, we became close and shared the good and bad stuff that happen through almost a year. We cried and shared smiles together, we served God together and like a little plant our friendship was growing and blooming very nice.

Somehow after we started dating this changed, the trust was gone without notice and so did the comfort in each other.
What changed, I guess the state of mind. We some how forgot, I think, to water the plant (our friendship) I know, not good!

But isn’t this way that we handle our relationships? We just take them for granted and we don’t invest the proper time to them. We hurt with painful words without thinking the damage we cause. These little problems develop into insecurities and this bring anxiety along. Your thoughts go from being God centered to ego-centered thoughts. One focuses on the things that are not working in our lives, on the pain and the disappointment, on people and not on or relationship with God. This is the relationship we take for granted, if this one fails any other will not make it, guaranteed!
But this is the lie that the evil enemy wishes us to believe and we walked right in the trap.

1Peter 6:8
6Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. 7Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
8Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.

The pain became unbearable and I couldn’t stand anymore that the person I fell in love with was no longer my friend. Instead we became two strangers and we didn’t know what really was going on in our lives anymore, we were totally disconnected. There were tears of sorrow and bitterness, the memorable thoughts became fewer and the wound grew bigger. The joy was over soon.

God is a loving God, He is Love and He is our Father to whom our lives belong, so He wants joy for our hearts. He designed a complete life for us when we were still in our mother's womb.
His word walks us through life in a way that we do not lack of anything.
John 16:24
24Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.

So if God promises a complete joy then this relationship is far from being legitimate cause it doesn’t bring any joy, the love is not growing and we were not honoring God with our attitudes. Not to mention that our relationship with God was of course going down the hill.
We were together in a relation which we were kissing it good bye and trying to “enjoy it” while it lasted as we both new in our hearts that the moment would come to unplug the life support cause it will never grow on it’s own like that. We were living a lie.
With pain in my heart I listen to God and took my place as His daughter and put my pain in His hands, I moved on the side and let Him go on with His perfect plans.
So I had a talk with my “best friend” who became more of a stranger to me and I spoke in all honesty to how I felt. With love I told him how hurt I felt and how sad I was that I no longer had my friend. How this once beautiful friendship became a painful, sad, ugly as wither plant. We don’t know how we got there, we felt like we didn’t know how we would get out of there either at that moment, but what we knew for sure was that God had always been the reason of our beautiful bond and He would restore it if we seek Him with all our hearts.
We were both very sad that we needed to part from "being" a couple back to the friendship level, but we both agree that it was best for us to do so and that this would honor God. It would speak of our trust and faith in God and Love for each other. Cause we do have Love for each other, otherwise we would have just turned our backs and just walk separate ways in bitterness. This decision in an odd way has brought joy and peace back to our hearts.
Today almost a month since that day, we are building this renewed friendship, little by little with smiles and honesty. It has not been easy but we both do it with a sincere heart not forgetting that God is in control and the one calling the shots.
It doesn’t matter the when or the how; God has long ago laid plans for our lives and perhaps we can’t see the big picture now but we both trust that God is not through with us yet.

From day one we felt God’s presence being at work on this friendship we share for almost a year. Now I am smiling while I write cause I am just picturing God walking in the middle, Francisco at one end and me at the other side, I believe that we were so busy looking at each other because we liked each other so much that we forgot to look up and pay attention to what God was talking to us. Now we are on "time out" for not being good listeners.

Seriously, this is what the bible says in Ecclesiastes 4:12 A rope that is woven of three strings is hard to break.
That means that our friendship consist of Francisco the Lord and me so it can not be lost if we put our eyes on God, He is the only one who can restore it. From our side we need to be available, committed and loyal to this friendship.
At first it seems and felt mission impossible but the Lord provides the way and I found wise instruction in :

1 Corinthians 13:7 4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8Love never fails.

Jesus teaches of a Love like we have never known before, His love is different to how we are used to love. He changes our heart and that is why the love we used to know before knowing Jesus no longer satisfies our soul. We seek a much complete love, the good stuff. We will not settle for less, that is as clear.
Don’t you settle for mediocre relationships and don't fall for the traps/lies of the enemy.
God has a perfect plan for all of us and He speaks with no riddles but with the truth, He doesn't provide broken dreams but solid promises to prosper you and not to harm you and to give you hope and a future. He doesn't give you almost happiness but complete joy, He doesn't think you are average He made you a masterpiece and He loves you with all his heart, so much that he gave his only begotten Son that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have everlasting life. What a Love! Don't settle for "it might work" or "we might be happy", trust in God and follow His voice and you will find the true love in your heart.
Have no doubt but take action and take a stand as Son or Daughter of the King of Kings you are heir of His promises.

How will we know what to do or what to say to make it right again?
Only God is the answer, by seeking the Lord with all of our hearts then we will hear His voice and we will know where and what to do!
Isaiah 30:21
Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying,
“ This is the way, walk in it,”
Whenever you turn to the right hand
Or whenever you turn to the left

God is in control.
With Love to you and rejoicing in the Lord,

Julieta Reyes

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It is awesome how God provides, takes back, gives back, and allows us to break down to build us up again.

Many times when I think about running, I want to go run faster and quicker to reach the finish line. I see others around me running so fast, strong, and focused that I am convinced I can do it like they do it. But when I hit the road, I realized that I must run at my own speed, my pace, and follow my training and strategies. It is the only way I can reach the goal. Otherwise, pain and injuries await us.

The same applies for our lives. We need to follow God's individual plan and strategies for us. If we follow someone else’s' plan we will not succeed. If God created us to be unique and special, why is He going to have a "cookie-cutter" plan for all of us? The answer is simple, He does not! We must remember that path towards God's promises is filled with shortcuts. Every time we stumbled out of His trail to get there faster, we get further away. There are no shortcuts to God. "Christ is the way". At times, staying in the path may not be what we want, be frustrating, and even bring sadness--we just want to get there. Our Father wants us to reach out to Him for directions and guidance to reach the joy and the blessing He had promised us. It takes obedience, dedication, perseverance, and even time. It's like running. If you don’t believe me, go and try a marathon without training. Training for big races, require dedication, commitment, time and avoiding shortcuts as well. Sometimes, during training for a big race, the best exercise to get ahead is to slow down and even rest. When we derail from the path God set for us, to get back to the trail, we also need to slow down and back track on our steps to find the main path again.

The songs say “what a wonderful friend I have in Jesus”. Indeed, I do. And also, what I wonderful friend I have in Julieta. I am tracking back to get back in the trail God designed for me. I keep to my training to stay close to Jesus and to re-build a friendship that value and that has blessed me life in way that I can’t describe! I want to avoid shortcuts to prevent the pain and the frustration these bring those around me, God, and to my life. Friendships are built with encouragement, trust, commitment, and love. My shortcuts have caused pain, I pray that getting back to my trail will bring forgiveness along with healing and joy.

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us” (Hebrews 12:1).

In Christ,

Francisco

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