Last week I went to a fundraising banquet. There was a time for socializing, a dinner and then a nationally known speaker. It was a wonderful time. A friend of mine had invited me and got tickets for myself and one other person and, since my wife was unavailable, I asked one of our friends from the Momentum Program to go with me. He was more than willing.
We had a lot of fun that night. The food was great. The speaker was entertaining and challenging. As we left, and were talking about the night, I realized something that it was good to be reminded of. God often uses His people as gifts to others. Let me explain.
One of the issues that my friend and I talked about, at different times during our evening together, was the power and impact of bad company. He had spent a lot of time incarcerated and could identify that many of the situations that led to getting locked up was directly connected to the people he was hanging out with. But as we continued the discussion he talked about how one of the changes he was making was who he was allowing in his life and he listed the people that were now in his circle. All of the people he listed were men who loved Jesus and were trying to serve Him. And that was the reminder that hit me. One of God’s gifts to this wonderful man was the gift of friendship with some of His servants.
Please realize that Christians should make fantastic friends. We are instructed to grow in love, patience and kindness. We are commanded to forgive and to put others before ourselves. The world doesn’t operate like this and it’s no wonder that suspicion and broken relationships mark family structures, governments and organizations all over. And I know that this is only one of the problems in our world but it was obvious from listening to my buddy that the Lord was redeeming the time for him by replacing those who were in his inner circle with people who loved the Son.
What I guess I’m getting at is, sometimes we complicate things unnecessarily. We are supposed to go and make disciples of all nations. That is unquestioned. But this doesn’t always mean taking part in an evangelistic crusade or putting on an outreach event. Sometimes it’s as simple as inviting someone along to a benefit dinner.
Our challenge to you is this: who can you begin simply allowing into your life? Some of us do this more easily than others. But all of us can learn to do it. You’re going to go to your daughter’s program anyway. You’re going to go to your son’s football game anyway. Why not invite someone along with you? Your friendship may be the gift God is giving to them that can help turn them around and point them in the direction He has for them!