DayBreaks for 3/18/16: Friend or Fan?
NOTE: Galen will be traveling for the next 10 days or so. You will be receiving messages from the DayBreaks archive during that time! From the DayBreaks archive, 2011:
As many of you know, I have a son who is involved with an evangelical Christian web site. There is frequently quite a bit of interesting stuff on the site, and here’s part of a blog post from Alyce McKenzie, dated 1/20/2011, that makes a very good point:
“I was on Facebook the other day and I saw a notice that George Strait wanted to be my friend. My pulse quickened. I am not especially partial to Georg Strait’s music, but he is famous and he wants to be my friend! I briefly wondered how he found out about me. Maybe he’s started reading my blog. Maybe he has found out that I just started taking guitar lessons and knows how good I will one day be. I looked more closely and saw that George Strait wanted me to be his fan. What would that involve? Learning the tabs to all his songs? Memorizing his life story? I don’t think I have time for that right now. How ridiculous for me to think for a moment that a famous person would want to be my friend!
“I like Facebook, but I have somehow ended up with lots of friends I don’t even know. Maybe that’s how Jesus feels. Lots of people ask to be his friends, and when he confirms them, they never give him another thought. Lots of people claim to be his friends and really are barely acquainted with his life story and body of teachings, much less willing to live by them.” – Fans or Friends: Reflection on Matthew 5:1-12, Alyce McKenzie, Patheos.com, 1/20/11
Galen’s Thoughts: Interestingly, while I am convinced that Jesus had quite a number of friends, the only time I can find where he personally addressed a single individual as “my friend” was on the night he was betrayed. He wasn’t addressing Peter, James or John…he was addressing Judas. And remember in the garden when they finally reached Jesus to arrest him? What did Judas do? He approached him and gave him a kiss of friendship as a pre-arranged signal that “This is the one you want.”
The appearances of friendship are really pretty easy to fake – even the hugs and kisses can hide a dark and scheming heart. The reality of friendship and of being a real friend is much more challenging.
Is Jesus your friend? Or are you just a fan of his?
PRAYER: Jesus, we want to truly be your friends, and to have you as our closest friend. Help us to understand the difference between being just your fan versus what friendship with you really means. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Copyright 2016, Galen C. Dalrymple. All rights reserved.