A man that hath friends must show himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother (Proverbs 18:24).
A few days ago, I renewed contact with a friend of mine from many years back. We hadn’t even spoken for probably thirty years. In the past, we attended church together, played basketball together, and simply had many common interests. Then, life happened.
Life changes occurred that interfered with our friendship. Both of us moved away. Distance and time pushed us apart. I am sure we experienced a lot of good and bad in the years to follow, but we couldn’t be there for each other. Thankfully, we live in the same town again — approximately five minutes away from each other.
All of us remember friends and acquaintances with whom we no longer have contact. Maybe they moved away as children. Maybe they left the area for educational or employment opportunities. Whatever the case may be, they cannot be in our lives now. This can be rather sad at times. However, there is one friend who sticks closer than a brother.
Jesus is that friend. He can be with us anywhere. He can be with us forever. We may not always sense His presence, but we can be assured He is there.
Think about it, there is nowhere we can go that He isn’t present. Psalm 139:7-10 says, “Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.” Yes, Jesus is a friend to whom distance does not matter — He is everywhere!
Also think about this: He is with us forever. In Hebrews 13:5 the Lord declares, “I will never leave thee nor forsake thee.” Imagine hearing these words spoken to John when he was in exile: “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.” He is with us in the beginning of our lives, the middle of our lives and then for all eternity.
Remember, friends and acquaintances will come and go because life happens. That is why it is so important to have Jesus in our lives. He is the one friend who can be with us everywhere and forever.
Dave Snyder is an Ordained Bishop with the Church of God – Cleveland, Tennessee. Before entering the ministry on a full-time basis, he was a school teacher. He also coached middle school basketball for eight years.
Dave and his wife, Sara, have two children — Craig and Karen. They also have one ten year old granddaughter — Breanna.
Dave and Sara pastored in West Virginia for thirty-six years. Sara is now retired from the banking industry, and Dave is retired from pastoring. However, Dave currently serves as prison Chaplain for the West Virginia Division of Corrections and Rehabilitation.
Writing essays, articles, and devotionals is a real passion for Dave. He also enjoys playing musical instruments and singing.