The REAL QUESTION We Must Ask Ourselves Concerning Friendship

On Monday, I wrote on the idea of friendship being seasonal and the pursuit of “that friend group” being something we shouldn’t feel like we have to strive for once we move into adulthood, and I think it home a bit.  In less than 24-hours, that post had been read over 500 times.

Friendship is something we all desire, and it’s not foreign to just high school students.  In fact, God made us that way.  We were created to be relational—both vertically with Him, and horizontally with one another.  Sin affects relationships.  You know this.  I’m preaching to the choir.

Acts 2:42-27 is a beautiful picture of believers doing life together.  And as they did this, God would do incredible things in their midst for His glory and their good.

So, in one sense, God made us to be in relationships with each other, finding joy and personal growth through the relationships he gives us, but we shouldn’t desire this “friend group” to be inclusive for the span of our lives.  That’s a cultural view, I think.  Friendships come in and out of our lives as fast as the changing of the seasons.  And, again, I think this okay.  I think this is how God made it to be.  Seasonal.  For the purpose of godliness.  Growth.  The encouragement of others.  Joy.  And much more.

However, as I thought through the concept of friendship—and why we desire it so strongly—I can’t help but ask why we’re so focused on finding friends, or friend groups, or someone in which to belong?  When do we get to the point where, instead of seeking out friendships for others to pour themselves into us, we are seeking to pour ourselves out into others?

There comes a point in our sanctification where we think more like spiritual parents than like spiritual teenagers, though maybe it’s never truly this way.

After all, iron does sharpen iron, right?

The Lie We Believe Concerning Friendship

Do you remember the show FRIENDS? It was a game changer for sitcom television. Six friends who did life together, through the ups and downs, for what seemed like the rest of their lives. For this show, and many others to follow, it was all about that one “group of friends” through which everything was filtered, and through which everything happened.

It’s hard to grow up, isn’t it? Some of us are lucky enough to have that “friend group” throughout high school, or maybe even college. But rarely any of us are lucky enough to have that “friend group” post-college or well into our adult years.

And here’s the deal: that is okay.

The biggest lie concerning friendship, which we believe in our culture today, is that we should have a group of friends that remain “that group of friends” for the rest of our lives.

This is simply not true.

The reality, I think, is that God calls us to different levels of friendships and relationships throughout our lives. The friends you had in college are still your friends, yes, but they are no longer “that friend group.” The friends you have today may no longer be “that friend group” next year. And, again, that’s okay.

When I look at the life of Jesus, his life was marked more by intentional relational discipleship than the pursuit of lifelong friendships. Yes, he had twelve guys he poured into—his disciples—but he was also their leader. Furthermore, when Jesus died, his disciples were left to go different ways. In a sense, they were to go and pour their lives into other people now.

When we realize this truth about friendship, then I think so many of us will stop putting all of our eggs into the basket of trying to find “that friend group” and begin to realize that there are incredible people—true, great friends—that God has put right in front of us at this point in our journey.

SECOND SHIFT Series at CBMW

Over the month of July, I have had the privilege of putting together and editing a series at CBMW Manual called, “Second Shift.”  One of the hardest things—I think—in which for men to excel at as gospel-centered warriors, is coming home from work at 5pm-ish and being emotionally, spiritually, and physically present as husbands and dads.  I talk with grown men often who struggle to engage their families during this time—what we have coined as the Second Shift, or hours after the normal 9-5pm grind.

We have hoped, through this series, to provide men with a few encouraging resources that might help prepare us to go home and lead well during this time.  After all, this is the most important part of the day.

I hope this series encourages you, exalts King Jesus, and makes Satan tremble with fear.

Here are the articles posted in order:

  1. Preparing Yourself for the Most Important Shift // By Greg Gibson
  2. Balancing the Most Important Shift // By David Sons
  3. Being the Spiritual Leader During the Most Important Shift // By Joey Cochran
  4. Embracing Community in Your Second Shift // By Whitney Clayton
  5. Loving Your Neighbor During the Most Important Shift // By Raymond Johnson
  6. How to Fight For Your Family During Transition and Change // By Tim Sweetmen

———

Originally posted at CBMW Manual.

REFORMATIONAL MANHOOD (2nd Edition) Now Available for Pre-Order

RM Pre-Order Logo

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE

 

Preparing Yourself for the Second Shift

734352_482449528475699_543133861_nThere are no amount of resources that can prepare us for leading our families well during the evening that compares to the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in our lives.  Being a dad and husband is an incredible honor; it is also an incredible amount of work.  I talk with men often about the struggles of withdrawal, laziness, and lack of energy during the evening… when our families need us the most.

I recently wrote an article for The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood concerning how to prepare yourself in practical ways for leading during, what one might call, “the second shift of our days.”  I also call it “the most important part of our day.”

Here is an excerpt:

I once had a leader I respected tell me that he doesn’t listen to music while he drives because he returns phone calls.  At one point in my life, I thought that was a great use of my time, so I began to return missed phone calls as soon as I turned over the ignition.  As I drove down the road, I would solve the world’s problems, catch up with old friends, and make quick decisions so I could continue from phone call to phone call.

I quickly found out that this use of time was not the best idea for me.  As I walked through the doors of my house, I would find myself still in work mode, often times potentially still on the phone.  Throughout my drive, I had done zero preparation mentally and spiritually to walk through doors and take dominion over the most important part of my day.  This was extremely unfair to my family, who was eagerly awaiting my attention as I arrived home.

As a result, I began to use my 20-minute drive home as preparatory time.

No music.  No podcasts.  No sports radio.  No phone calls.  Just me.  Just quiet.  Just time with the LORD.

This began to prove itself invaluable.

It was almost as if I was back in the locker room, with my headphones on, listening to the most get-hyped rap music I could find, as I prepared myself to take the basketball court.

Instead of the basketball court, however, I am now preparing myself for the greatest battlefield of them all—my home.

During this time with God, I am preparing myself to do everything but sit down on the couch and act like this is “my time.”  It’s not my time.  We don’t have “our time” anymore as men.  As dads and husbands, “our time” is when everyone is in bed.  And most of the time, when everyone is in bed, we’re too tired to have “our time” anyways, which leads me to my second point…

You can read the full article here.

Journey Camp || Morning Session Notes

photo

 

Tuesday Morning Session
What does it mean to LIVE FOR CHRIST?

What does it mean to LIVE FOR CHRIST?

Do you feel the tension when I bring up things like:

  • Living for Christ… means that Jesus died for you.
  • Living for Christ… means Jesus was nailed to a cross for you.
  • Living for Christ… means that people might persecute you because you believe in Jesus.
  • Living for Christ… means that your parents might not approve of it.
  • Living for Christ… means that people at school might make fun of you and mock you
  • Living for Christ… means you that might be called to take the gospel to places it’s never been before… plant churches… start orphanages… do medical missions… care for widows…
  • Living for Christ… Living for Christ might even mean death.

TEXT:

Phil. 1:19-21 together

  • PAUL SAYS — Yes, and I will rejoice, (19) for I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance, (20) as it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage… now as always… Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by (what?)… by death! (21) For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.

[Read more...]

SERMON: Work (Part 2) | The King’s Purposes In Our Work

Screen Shot 2014-05-19 at 12.49.06 PM

 

There was an issue with the recording on Sunday, as you will tell.  Sorry it sounds so terrible.  It won’t happen again.

 

Subscribe to the Foothills Church Podcast.

Visit the FC website.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 3,128 other followers

%d bloggers like this: