Summary: It is the basis of every level of relationship of meaning. You must have a foundation in friendship. Are you a good friend? What qualities should you look for in a friend?
Pt. 3 - Jellyfish & Johnny on the Spot
Every relationship of meaning has to have foundation in friendship. Jesus walks through a progression of relationship with His disciples. In John 15, He reveals that at some point He called them servant but then due to the incremental nature of intimacy He calls them friends. He says He could do that because they knew how to handle His business. Jesus knew that although we owe everyone love we only owe those who have proven themselves access. So, associates get your gift but friends get your life (your business).
So we said that it is essential to choose the correct people as friends and also that we know how to be good friends. So we have talked about character and honesty. We have been springboarding off of what we were taught (some of their instruction wasn't very good) from Ross, Monica, Joey, Phoebe, Rachel and Chandler. Today's lesson from them is a good one.
Not only must a person have character and be honest they must also be reliable. You have got to find someone who will be there on a consistent and regular basis for you. They will be Johnny on the Spot. There is a scriptural example of this:
TEXT: 1 Samuel 14:1, 4-7, 13-15
1- Later that day, Jonathan, Saul’s son, said to his armor bearer, “Come on, let’s go over to the Philistine garrison patrol on the other side of the pass.”
4-5 The pass that Jonathan was planning to cross over to the Philistine garrison was flanked on either side by sharp rock outcroppings, cliffs named Bozez and Seneh. The cliff to the north faced Micmash; the cliff to the south faced Geba (Gibeah).
6 Jonathan said to his armor bearer, “Come on now, let’s go across to these uncircumcised pagans. Maybe God will work for us. There’s no rule that says God can only deliver by using a big army. No one can stop God from saving when he sets his mind to it.”
7 His armor bearer said, “Go ahead. Do what you think best. I’m with you all the way.”
13 Jonathan shouted to his armor bearer, “Up! Follow me! God has turned them over to Israel!” Jonathan scrambled up on all fours, his armor bearer right on his heels. When the Philistines came running up to them, he knocked them flat, his armor bearer right behind finishing them off, bashing their heads in with stones.
14-15 In this first bloody encounter, Jonathan and his armor bearer killed about twenty men. That set off a terrific upheaval in both camp and field, the soldiers in the garrison and the raiding squad badly shaken up, the ground itself shuddering—panic like you’ve never seen before!
Think about this situation. Jonathan, on his own, chooses to take a path that was extremely difficult to navigate. Cliffs, sharp rocks and they could only crawl on all fours to ascend. And if that wasn't bad enough he then put himself (and his armor bearer) in a dangerous position - outnumbered and overpowered. Unless God had intervened this was a suicide mission not only for Jonathan but anyone who was with him. No one really knows for sure how many men they squared off against. We do know that they killed 20 so even if that was all that was there those are still not good odds. 20 vs. 2. It was probably more since in verse 15 we are told the soldiers left alive were shaken. The other thing we know for certain is attitude of the armor bearer. Seeing the incredibly difficult path chosen and the impossible odds he says, "Jonathan I am with you. I am all in. Do whatever is in your heart!" He is literally placing his life in Jonathan's hands.
I would submit to you that to be the friend that God wants you to be and when you look for the friend that God wants you to have you must be and find someone who is reliable! You need someone who is Johnny on the Spot when you are being hurt, stung, attacked.
The wise man certainly believed this trait was important.
Proverbs 17:17 - A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity.
What he is saying is this . . . A real friend is divinely assigned to your life for the tough times. We generally assign the greatest level of friendship to those we laugh, vacation, and have fun with. However, a true friend is there for the tough times. In fact, the wise man said they were born for that. Look at your friend and say that "you were born for me and my struggle!"
Think about this incredibly profound thought . . God brought them into existence for your hard time! Think about the process that involved . . . man and woman born, brought together, date, break up, date, engaged, cold feet, married, have a baby, baby grows up, ends up in the same geographic location as you all so that they are on site for your tear filled moments. Desire to see miracles? Quit looking past the people that have been dependable in your heart breaking moments.