There were several hundred people who wished me happy birthday on Facebook, with emails, text messages, and birthday cards. As I looked at all the different names I recognized a number of people who were part of my past a long time ago. It was good to see their names and to see their faces on Facebook. If I had time it would be nice to call every one who took the time to write a note to me and chat with them for a few minutes and to get caught up on the news in their lives. One of the sad things in life is how quickly close friends can become almost totally forgotten in a fairly short amount of time after they move away.
Around me there are invisible circular lines, each farther out, like a target, and I am at the bulls eye. Each of the lines represents a relationship level or closeness to me. There are people at each level, and some are moving closer to me and some moving away. At the closest level would be Patty, kids, and grandkids, followed closely by good friends and people at JBC. Those in the inner circle of my life have great influence on my character growth and accomplishments in life.
Jesus had that those lines around Him as well, one person who seemed to be closer to Him than anybody else on the earth, was called “the disciple that He loved,” John. And then came Peter and James, then the rest of the disciples, who He declared were His friends in John 15. Jesus was obviously very close to Mary, Martha, and Lazarus, and of course His mother. When Jesus rose from the dead He made a point to see over 500 different people who knew Him.
When we get to heaven there will be those same circles of relationship around Jesus. Someone will sit at His right and left hand. There will be those described in Revelation 3 who will sit on His throne with Him. Part of the rewards that we will receive at the “Judgment Seat of Christ” will be our proximity to Jesus. The closer we are to Him in this life, the closer we will be to Him in eternity.
The key to our relationship to Jesus in this life is our Bible reading, prayer life, and worship. I love Him therefore I will seek Him and draw near to Him. These verses are the motto of my life.
Philippians 3:7-8 But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ,
THANKYOU pastor Dee. That is so true of us all. I lost so many “friends” when I got sober in 2000. No one seems to want this Nora now but I have my best friend inJesus. I marked that scripture in my bible. Happy belated birthday. 🎂
I found it to be difficult at times to be self disciplined enough to read scriptures, pray and spend time with God. As I grow in Christ I am able to be more dedicated everyday. I am also real losing everyday when I look around me how different things would be if everyone realized how truthful the word of God.