Monday, January 28, 2008
What A Friend We Have in Jesus
I recently attended the Palisade's District Day of Learning in New Jersey. The keynote address was on the apparent clergy health crisis. We heard many statistics about how bad is the overall health of clergy. One of the stats was that something like 70% of clergy report that they have no friends. While this is in itself worth talking about, I found interesting the side note that the speaker made. After reporting this statistic, she asked the lay people, "Can you imagine no friends? Who would you share your gripes with and complain to if you had no friends?"
Hmm... Is that what friends are for. It just might be. When I think of the closest friends I have ever had, I can remember many conversations that revolved around complaints--sharing them and listening to them.
I wonder if that vision of friendship is anything like what we mean when we talk about Jesus as friend. If not, maybe it should be. There is a great tradition of laments that the people of God have lifted up. Maybe savior and friend meet in Jesus who has come to us as a human, and so knowing our plight, but also as God, and so able to do something about it. What a friend we have in Jesus.
Posted by Eric Helms at 8:02 PM