I’ve decided to start a series (ooo my very first series!!). I have a couple friends who have a series that they post under every once in a while and this is going to be similar to that.
One of the big things God has been teaching me in the last 1.5 years is the importance of Gospel Friends. The term is common around the body of Hope because of the Gospel series that Steve preached on a year ago. Gospel Friends are the friends that are around you and help you preach the Gospel to yourself. They demonstrate love and grace. Together, Gospel Friends are dedicated to doing life-on-life and pointing each other toward Godliness. We are all striving to be made more like Jesus. That only happens by the grace of God and the Bible is full of ways we can train ourselves to walk toward Christ and fight against our flesh.
I have never really had friends like this. I didn’t really see the need to until recently, though I know I have been longing for them for most of my life. People who know all the stuff I’ve done and are willing to love me through it as well as challenge me to “strain forward to what lies ahead” (Phil 3:13) I now have a few of those people in my life and WOW. It’s good.
So with that intro, this series is going to be me sharing the important things Gospel Friends do and how they help me in my faith.
With all that said:
Gospel Friends #1
Friends who can tell the difference between giving sympathy and pointing toward truth and change…showing they care and understand how I feel but love me enough to tell me straight up that I’m wrong and need to see the truth for what it is a walk toward it. That is true friendship. I’m so thankful for the times I have been affirmed and rebuked simultaneously. Nothing makes me feel more loved.
[[It’s hard to do things like this and not give some sort of challenge, so know that these are mainly for myself with the hope that you too will become a more Gospel Friend.]]
Who am I failing to correct or consistently point to truth because I’m afraid of hurting her feelings or challenging her beliefs? The fact is, if the relationship is truly rooted in Christ, even if we are tactless at first, the relationship will be restored.
Thank you, Jesus, for the way you demonstrated friendship during your time on earth, despite the lack of true friends around you. Teach us how to love like you–with care and purpose.