We have a lot of kids. So I’ve been told. A lot. And I agree. But I know exactly why God gave me so many. That reason can best be summed up with a monologue from comedian Jim Gaffigan. In a profession where most of his colleagues are single, he is married……..with 5 children. Being asked the same question day after day he gives this hilarious answer:
“Why so many?! Well, why not? I guess the reasons against having more children always seem uninspiring and superficial. What exactly am I missing out on ? Money? A few more hours of sleep? A more peaceful meal? More hair? These are nothing compared to what I get from these five monsters who rule my life. I believe each of my five children has made me a better man. So I figure I only need another thirty four kids to be a pretty decent guy.”
I could not agree with Mr. Gaffigan more! Truly with each of my children God has revealed more of his character to me, and for that I feel blessed beyond what I deserve. But I was a very dumb teenager and a slightly less dumb 20 something, so God knew I was going to need more than just my children to show me who He wanted me to be. Without a doubt, His word, and fellowship with Him is my primary source of revelation, but as I am a visual person, and highly relationship oriented, God has placed in my life an incredibly diverse array of friends each with strengths and weaknesses vastly different than my own, but all distinctly common in their love for God and profound way of displaying His character to me. Another commonality between these friendships was that at some point the intensity of their personality and/or their display of God’s image became too much for me, and I either walked away, or heavily considered it. And it wasn’t till these last few years that I began to see the sovereignty in it all.
You see, opposites attract. And I never understood the beauty of that as much as I have lately. The secret is to focus on each others strengths. Glory in them. Emulate them. Praise them. At the very least acknowledge them. However, more often then not we focus on their weaknesses instead. I have almost lost friendships because of this human tendency. But God had bigger plans for me. Bigger than my pride. Bigger than my opinion. Bigger than my hurt feelings. And I am so grateful that His love never gives up on me!
These friends in my life were being used by God in a way that neither of us could have understood in the moment. It was in such a deeply intricate, almost covert way. Yes, God knows exactly how to mold us into his masterpiece without us even knowing! So with their permission, I have decided to share with you,one by one, some of the friends I have learned from and how I nearly missed out on the whole thing! Stay tuned next week for the very first Friday Friend Day.