I’ve had good friends in my life. Don’t we thank the Lord for the gift of friendship? But I’ve learned that having good friends is not a common experience. Those who stick by you through thick-and-thin.
Let me explain. There were over one hundred ministers in my region of the old denomination I served. I was ‘a member in good standing’, as it was called. But trouble found me and I fell off my ‘high horse’. Landed hard. Of all those one hundred, only one bothered to get in touch. Only one, one time.
No one stopped by. Even that one never called back again. But a local Roman Catholic priest had me preach in his hospital chapel service urging me to ‘get back on that horse’. A good friend. Another one was leader of the local Jewish Synagogue, who urged me to use their building to start a new church, as they only used it on Friday evenings, and that only a few times a year.
Friends come in surprising ways. You know what I’ve learned through this? Get off the dime, reach out to someone else who’s hurting. Care about someone else for a change. Not only if they’re in the right. No matter what. Don’t say you’re a friend, be one. Mean it. Right or wrong, be there for them. Like God is for us when we’ve given Him lots of reasons to turn away and ‘head out of Dodge’.
That one verse from 1 Chronicles 27 is a gem. Earlier in Chronicles you can find list after list of important people in King David’s life. Military, political, worship leaders–valuable people all. Then we read in verse 33 the name of Hushai the Arkite. He’s not in charge of the donkeys, olive oil storage, army officers or the singers in worship services. No, he is called, plain and simple, David’s ‘friend’. The King had his counselors and advisors, his assistants and officers. In Hushai, he had a friend.
Hushai in Hebrew language means ‘quick’. That’s more than a hint. For when friends are in need, be quick to get by their side. To care…quickly. The Lord has shown me this. Not to write of it, but to do it…quickly. You too?
Prayer: Lord, may we quickly show our love and concern as good friends. In Jesus’ name. Amen.