A Friend Forever
Sunday, January 21, 2018 Week III in Ordinary Time
Jonah 3:1–5, 10; Psalm 25; 1Corinthians 7:29–31; Mark 1:14-20
For the world in its present form is passing away. 1Corinthians 7:31
St. Teresa of Avila once said she wouldn’t want to form a friendship with anyone she could not be with forever in heaven. Friends meant that much to her.
How much do they mean to me? Does it make me appreciate more having Jesus as a friend when I realize he will be my friend forever?
Teresa compares friendship with Jesus to marriage. Married people are in for the long haul. Their goal is perfect union of mind and will and heart. You don’t get to that overnight—either with a spouse or with Jesus. You have to be committed.
And you can’t get to it without endless forgiveness. We fail Jesus constantly, and Jesus, with frustrating regularity, fails to live up to our expectations. We have to put up with Jesus as with a human spouse, even when we don’t understand why he is like he is. It takes time and commitment to grow into union of mind and will and heart with anyone. But it’s worth it.
In all three “synoptic” Gospels (those “similarly focused”: Matthew, Mark, Luke), Jesus promises that his words—his teaching and his promises—will never pass away” (Matthew 24:35, Mark 13:31, Luke 21:33). Nor will his love.
How much is that worth?
Friendship is interaction. Interact with Jesus and he will be your friend forever.
ACTION: Think of your longest friendships. Why have they lasted?
PRAYER: “Lord, be with me. Let me be with you.”