I especially have a difficult time with the new language of texting. HHAYT? F-TY? ROFL? FWIW? BFF? I wonder if some day we will all forget how to actually spell out words and future generations will need some sort of Rosetta Stone to figure out what we were saying to each other.
From the context of several blogs I read, I finally understood that BFF must somehow refer to “best friend,” but the second “F” had me stumped. Best Female Friend was the best I could come up with until the day I saw it appended to a man’s name. So I swallowed my pride—yet again—and asked. “Best Friend Forever,” I was told. Mystery solved.
Yes, you know me by now; I started thinking about Bible things. This one is really so obvious, isn’t it? Yet it seems somehow inappropriate to us to refer to a Divine Being as our “Best Friend.” In fact, Jesus was called “a friend of sinners” as an insult wasn’t He? The Son of man came eating and drinking, and they say, Behold, a gluttonous man and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners! Matt 11:19. Aren’t we so glad He was?
James had no qualms about calling Abraham “the friend of God,” 2:23, because of the life of faith he lived. It is possible, in fact, it is something we should all strive for. What better friend could we have?
Do you think you cannot possibly achieve that goal? Abraham was not a perfect man; he failed more than once. Remember his lie about Sarah being his sister, something they tried everywhere they went, not just the two places they were caught at it, Gen 20:12,13? How can we see that as anything but a lack of faith in God to keep them safe? Yet all through his life, not just in this but also in the decision to use Hagar as a surrogate, Abraham probably did not envision his failures as faithless, but as a man who truly believed God’s promises and showed that belief by trying to help God when it seemed that circumstances might interfere.
Abraham learned over the years through the many misfortunes his “helping” brought him, that God could take care of Himself, that He did not need Abraham’s assistance. The Lord waited until Sarah was physically unable to bear children. He had Abraham send away Ishmael, the “just in case” baby. Finally, on that lonely mountain when God asked the unthinkable, Abraham “got it.” “God can raise him from the dead,” the Hebrew writer tells us Abraham thought, 11:19. So he did as God asked and offered his son, just as his Friend would one day offer His.
You don’t have to be perfect to be a friend of God. You just have to believe and grow in that belief, learning to trust no matter how senseless it seems, to obey no matter the cost. Do you want a real BFF? So does God. So does His Son. And you can be it.
Greater love has no man than this that a man lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends, if you do the things which I command you, John 15:13,14.