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I was on the phone the other day with my dear friend Nina that I had the great privilege of meeting while I lived in Columbus, Ohio and we had a very interesting and thought provoking conversation. She is “dating” this guy and most of their communication is done through text messages. She stated that between work emails and text messaging someone she was supposed to be dating, that she was gonna lose it. We talked about how technology has allowed us to lose appropriate communication with people and how many times a message, concept or emotion is misconstrued because there is no loner face to face interaction and that there is definitely no voice to voice interaction.. It really got me thinking about how sad the world we live in today really is.

As I posted a few days ago, the world and society we live in today is consumed with so much business that we are missing the opportunity to love, minister and truly fellowship with the people around us. We are missing the mark on what Christ has called us to be and to do. There is no where in Scripture that says, I can only hang out with you if you are fun, not going through a stressful time, or if your life is 100% together. In fact, the bible says and Jesus did the complete opposite. Jesus went and befriended those who were struggling, those that needed to be touched, loved and embraced because they were in their darkest hour. He reached out, spoke life into and prayed with those that needed it.

As I am yet again faced with the struggles of life, I really have started to question who I am. I have asked, “Am I really this negative defective person who ALWAYS has too much on their plate?” “Am I really this person that brings down the mood, is depressing and isn’t fun to be around?” Then the answer quickly hit me this morning while talking with my counselor. No I am NOT. That is not my name. I am not defective, negative and depressing. I am REAL and I am real with this journey of life that I am living. I am not a surface person. I am as real as it comes and I am not good at covering up my emotions. I have good days and I have bad days. There are days when I feel like I am on top of the world and then there are days that I feel like the rug was swept out from under my feet.

However, no matter what day I am living in, no matter good, bad or indifferent, I know one thing and one thing and I stand firm on this. My house was built on a STRONG foundation. I am a child of the ONE TRUE KING. God knit me together in my mothers womb and HE knows all things. Meaning, he knows how I am wired, he knows what fills my soul and he also knows what depletes it. I am who I am. I am wired in such a way that even in my darkest hours, I will place someone else’s needs above mine. I am thoughtful, sympathetic and empathetic to others around me. I know as bad as life may get for me, someone else out there has it a little harder and needs to be touched by the light and hope of Christ. I know that all the labels I have either placed on myself or that others may have placed upon me are NOT of God. That they are from the enemy and they are words and names that continuously try to bring me down. I know I live in a world that is ruled by evil and I live in a world where people are too comfortable in their own lives to take a moment  to meet the needs of the lost, broken and wounded.

As I was praying tonight and asking God what he wanted to show me, I turned to the book of JOB and started to read it. I was reminded that in Job’s darkest hour, when everything he had was taken he still praised God and never sinned against him. I was also taken back to how Job’s friends acted and reacted to him.  Job 2:11-13 reads like this:

“11When Job’s three friends, Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite, heard about all the troubles that had come upon him, they set out from their homes and met together by agreement to go and sympathize with him and comfort him. 12 When they saw him from a distance, they could hardly recognize him; they began to weep aloud, and they tore their robes and sprinkled dust on their heads. 13 Then they sat on the ground with him for seven days and seven nights. No one said a word to him, because they saw how great his suffering was.”

WOW WOW WOW.. I love this more than words can express. This is TRUE community. This is what we are called to be and do. His three friends dropped everything, met their friend in his DARKEST hour, got down to his level and sat with him for days.. They didn’t speak a word but allowed him to grieve. They allowed him to be himself and they didn’t judge it, try to fix it or explain their take on the situation. They loved on him in such a way that is breathtaking to me. They came alongside their fellow brethren, met him, loved him and waited until he was ready to speak. This right here people is TRUE friendship and what it means to love someone in good and bad times. This right here is what we are lacking in our world and in our lives today.

I don’t know about you but this right here is so convicting and its a point and area I have been trying to understand for most of my Christian journey. Since I accepted the Lord I have been judged, disrespected, condemned and left alone to figure things out when life got too hard. I have been told my the multitudes that I always have a lot going on in my life and I have been told that I am a negative person that always brings down the mood. I have been told there were too many other people to pour into and I was not one of them. I have been told that as much as this person knew I needed a big hug and direction, that I just needed to figure it out on my own. My point in all of this isn’t to be a “victim” or to play woe is me. My point is that if this is truly how someone felt then why in the world wouldn’t they pick up the phone, call me and say I know you are in a difficult season, how can I serve you, pray for you and how can love on you in this moment?

I thank the LORD he created me in such a way that through the trials and tribulations that I see HIS unfailing and unconditional face and receive the outpouring of love He has upon me. I am not saying I see it or get there right away but it doesn’t take me too long. If I look at the odds stacked against me since I became a Christian, everything would say turn your back on God and curse him. However I don’t. I praise HIM. I praise Him for all my trials, hurts, disappointments and rejections because as hard as they have been, they have purified me, refined me and grown me. They have allowed me to seek HIM and lean on him for his truth and understanding. However many many people don’t get this. They walk around broken and wounded and then come to know God only to receive the same judgments, betrayals and hurts as the world gave them.

This post isn’t a negative pity party for Alison. It is a blog post that is talking about the ugliness of life and how we as Christians need to stop the business of life, Stop with all this technology mumbo jumbo and when we see a fellow sister or brother going through a heartache, struggles and  life altering situations, be like Job’s friends. Be like Jesus and meet that person where they are. Job didn’t need to call his friends and say come over and pray for me. They saw a need and they dropped everything to be there for their friend. When Jesus saw those that were possessed by demons, severely ill, and had given up hope on life he didn’t say, well you have too much going on in your life and your really not gonna be too much fun right now. NO NO NO. Jesus saw a need and met them there. He prayed with them and healed them. Healed them in such a way that they ran off and proclaimed his goodness. We, all of us, should be doing the same thing. When we see a need go meet it. Don’t wait on a person to invite you or ask you to do it. Step up to the plate and act on it.

Gosh, we are missing the basics. We are missing the simple things. Its really not that hard people.  LOVE LOVE LOVE. God’s greatest commandment is to love. Love him, love thy neighbor, love thy enemies. Its all about love. Its about the action of the word love and not just saying it. Haven’t you ever heard the saying, actions speak louder than words? Well act on love and do me a favor, don’t text message it or email it. Pick up the phone or go to someones house and meet them. So much gets lost in the midst of emails and texts and so much is embraced and healed simply by touch.

Be different even if it means having nothing of worldly value. Let the light, life, hope and LOVE of Jesus shine through you in such a way that people are transformed, healed and changed just by being in your presence. Love in such a way that the masses come to know JESUS just by encountering you. You have the authority, power and love of Christ in you. Just tap into it and act on it. God doesn’t promise pretty but He does promise abundant life through him. I will take the ugly just to know HIM more. What about you???