By Emily Ma, InterHigh Mentor, Sophomore @ UC Berkeley
How does Jesus define friendship, and what is the difference between a “friend” and a “servant”? Which do I relate to more?
A servant does not know what His master is doing and must blindly obey. God does not want us as minions to do His bidding – He has revealed a lot to us if we would but pause to spend time with Him, as we do with any other friend, in prayer and reading His Word, His precious journal for us. Sometimes, when I don’t understand His will, I fell more like a servant, but I don’t ask God to explain or for insight. When I feel like doing DT is a task or loving others is a burden, I must remember that Jesus sees His disciples as His friends, and He is willing to talk about what is going on. Many times, we simply close ourselves off at that point, and we choose to entertain concepts of God as a distant, oppressive killjoy in our refusal to confront the state of our hearts. But He is always open to talk with us about how we are doing. Though we are slow to communicate, Jesus already knows what we are thinking and how we feel, and He will meet us where we are.
Jesus defines friendship as those who know and understand Him and His Father’s heart. When I think about my close friends, I know their likes and dislikes, what their reactions to situations would be, their dreams for life, etc. Jesus also says, “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.” He did exactly that. Not only does He know everything about me, He willingly died for me when I was yet a rebellious sinner. How merciful and wondrous is our God for stooping down to pick us up and call us “friend” while we were still His enemies! Jesus is the best friend I have and could ever have. But am I His? I hesitate to call myself Jesus’ friend because it seems so unworthy. What can I possibly offer Him? The least I can do is whatever He asks of me – to obey His commandments to love others, just as He loved me. The least I can do is everything.