The story is told of two friends. Two friends, that when observed, could easily be labeled as best friends. One friend had been blessed with great riches and wealth, while the other friend was rather poor. Despite their differences, they loved spending time together. From school, to work, to church, to even free time, they could almost always be seen together. Even in the moments they were apart, they would think about each other and tell others about each other. Now the wealthy friend loved to share what he had with anyone who asked and even those who didn’t ask. He especially loved giving gifts to his best friend. In fact, one of his favorite things to do was to give gifts to his best friend as a surprise. To the outsider, their friendship was the epitome of perfection. However, there was something peculiar about their friendship. They never really conversed with one other. Odd as it may seem, it was true. Aside from saying “hello” in the morning and a few casual words throughout the day, nothing else was really spoken. This broke the heart of the wealthy friend. He longed for the day when they would once again have a meaningful conversation, like they used to. He tried to tell his best friend that two-way communication was vital for their friendship, but all he would typically receive was a nod. As time passed, their friendship began to wane, and although the wealthy friend continued to give his friend gifts, there was no acknowledgement that they were received at all.
While this is a true story, it is not your typical one. Why? Because this story of a strained friendship has been seen in over and over again in ages past and in the present day. If you hadn’t guessed it, God is that wealthy benevolent friend, and you are that poor friend. Far too similar to the story, God is mistreated. The facts are simple and the question is relevant. There’s you and there’s God. Are you best friends?
The good news is that God has claimed you not only as His child but also as His best friend. This is a great spot to be in! The God of the universe calling you His best friend! More than just claiming you as His child and best friend, He treats you as such. “The relations between God and each soul are as distinct and full as though there were not another soul upon the earth to share His watch care, not another soul for whom He gave His beloved Son” (Steps to Christ p. 100). He treats you as if you were the only soul in need of saving. Do you treat Him as your only Savior and best friend? The facts are still simple and the question remains. You and God. Best friends?
There is a lack, a piece missing in the puzzle. Far too often, prayer is the one point in your friendship with God that is lacking. Friends that have one-sided communication can hardly be called friends, let alone best friends. Communication, the foundation of friendship, is a two-way street. However, even when it is two-way, it does not mean it is the communication of a friendship. Through times of ease and prosperity, it is easy to thank God and praise Him, but when life goes horribly wrong, is it your first inclination to turn to Him? Even if it is, that doesn’t mean you are treating God as your best friend. Far too often, God is treated like a vending machine; going to Him when you have wants; praising Him when you get what you want; being frustrated when there is an outcome that is wrong in your eyes; and thinking you didn’t say the right prayer when nothing comes out. You and God. Best friends?
Every morning something special happens. While you are still asleep, your best friend is waiting. Waiting for the perfect time to wake you up so you can spend the entire day together. When the appointed time comes, He wakes you up. As your eyes begin to open and you realize it’s time to get up, His heart leaps for joy inside, for the long awaited time has come for Him to commune with you. But His heart is broken as He sees you get out of your bed, flip through your Bible pointlessly, and begin your day, leaving Him behind, and losing that special appointment with God. You rush off to class, to work, to the various appointments throughout the day, doing your best not to be late. All the while, not realizing that you were not just late but completely neglected your appointment and privilege to commune with God. You and God. Best friends?
Real prayer is more than treating God as if He’s done nothing for you, missing your appointments with Him, and treating Him like a vending machine. To truly commune with God is so much more! Communing with God is not just having your mind continually drawn to Him. “In order to commune with God, we must have something to say to Him concerning our actual life” (Steps to Christ p.93). Your wants, joys, sorrows, cares, and fears are to be kept before the Father. Every minute detail that affects your day-to-day life is to be shared with God. This is what it means to commune with Him. As blessings are continually poured out throughout your day, will they go unnoticed? Or will every evidence of God’s watchcare be a reason for praise? As you rise each morning, will you miss your appointment with God? Or will it be your greatest joy to commune with God? God longs for the day when the facts and question are still there, but have changed. You and God? Best friends.