The Importance of Friends
Friends are people who are there for us when we need them. Often we don’t know who among our acquaintances are true friends until circumstances reveal it. This being-there-for of friendship applies not only in times when external events overwhelm us and we feel helpless and alone. Friends also, on occasion, save us from ourselves. Our inner high and low pressures threaten us with a personal implosion. A friend knows us well enough to recognize this and does not walk away. Friendship, like the relationship that Jesus describes himself having with his “Father,” is like the digital cloud. Everything here down below is stored up there, non-geographically, but accessible from any physical point and at every moment. Both friends are there together in the cloud. But they are also individuals, living the friendship in all the changing circumstances of life. Perhaps this helps us understand why the way this relationship with the Father is described sounds both deeply intimate and way beyond our grasp.