Meditation

07/01/2022

Do not forsake your friend and the friend of your father, and do not go to your brother’s house when disaster strikes you—-better a neighbor nearby than a brother far away.” (Proverbs 27:10 – Developing Friendships)

This somewhat strange-sounding advice of this verse being practiced by older adults today. Friends are often called upon for assistance when family members live at a distance. This is so true in today’s times of families being spread across the country and even into other countries in our mobile society. Because of the value of friends to family relationships, nurturing friendships is important to marital and family happiness. Friendship is honored in 17:17 and 18:24. Being friends with one’s mate is celebrated by the lover in Song of Solomon 5:16

PRAYER FOR THE DAY:

Precious Abba, our friendships have become even more important than ever before, because we are more spread out as families than ever before. Therefore, we tend to lean on our friends like we have for families more than ever before as well. Let us reveal the value of our friends and friendship as a whole, more like that of equal value with our family. Today we continue to pray troops serving in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, that a peaceful solution might be found and let the fighting be silenced. We also pray for those who are suffering in body, mind, and/or spirit, with friends, family, for those we don’t know. Amen

THOUGHT OF THE DAY:

God loves us as if there were just one of us.”

KNOWING GOD:

‘Look,” said Naomi, ‘your sister-in-law is going back to her people and her gods. Go back with her.’ But Ruth replied, ‘Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord deal with me, be it ever so severely, if anything but death separates you and me.’ When Naomi realized that Ruth was determined to go with her, she stopped urging her.” (Ruth 1:15-18 – Authoritative Love)

Ruth’s fervent speech to her mother-in-law Naomi is one of the most beautiful declarations of authentic family love in the Bible. Even though not addressed to husband-wife relationships, it is often used in wedding ceremonies to describe what marital love should be. It affirms the desire to be together, to face life’s challenges together, to be a family, and to worship the same God. All of these elements are central to a healthy Christian marriage when Christ becomes the Lord who makes the Father’s presence known to the family. Ruth was a Moabitess, but claimed Israel’s God as her own and committed her life to God and to the one who had introduced her to God. Commitment to God often comes through commitment to His people. A solemn prayer of commitment is the first step towards God.

I AM:

So watch yourselves, ‘if your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him. If he sins against ou seven times a day, and seven times in a day and says, ‘I repent,’ forgive him.” (Luke 17:3-4 – Salvation through Repentance)

There is not any “wiggle” room here, if a believer comes to you repenting of their sins, we are to forgive them. Continuing the expression of forgiveness is a fundamental factor in Christian family life. Jesus described a fellow disciple rather than an actual brother in the home, but the principle of expressed forgiveness remains the same. God’s judgment is promised to those who refuse to express forgiveness even though they desire it for themselves.

2ND THOUGHT OF THE DAY:

I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.” (John 15:11 – Shared Joy Within Families)

Joy is a distinctive quality of biblical faith in both the Old and New Testaments. In this verse Jesus found joy in the disciples. He prayed their joy might overflow in abundance because of their relationships to Him and to each other. Joy is intended to be shared whether worship or family togetherness (Deut. 16:14-15). The Christian family amplifies joy because a relationship with Christ guides family relationships. Uniting the family in Christian faith results in joy for the family (Acts 16:34). Good family relationships bring joy (Proverbs 10:1; 15:20). Happy experiences can be complete. These four points of biblical scripture is the basis for a strong foundation within family and friends relationships.

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