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Topic: Insulted (11/01/04)
TITLE: Love of a Friend
By Liz Hoyt Eberle
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I called Jane several times to talk about her insult, but she did not answer her phone. Then, one day I came face to face with her in the grocery store and called her to account. “Jane, why did you ignore me at the meeting last week? You really insulted me!”
Jane’s answer pierced even more. “Oh Honey, I didn’t intend to be rude. I was in a hurry so I just could not stop to chat. Don’t you think ‘insult’ is a rather strong word? I really must run… I am tired and I have so much to do.”
Quickly pushing her cart to the check out lane, my friend left me standing speechless at the display of red seedless grapes.
My day was ruined and I promised myself that I would never speak to Jane again. She left me out of her life then offended me further when she had no time or interest to discuss it. I certainly would never again leave myself open for any more hurt. I would avoid her at all costs.
Later that evening, I went to my Father, broken hearted. Between sobs I begged God to ease my hurt. After awhile, I looked down at the Bible in my lap and through burning tears, the words of Jesus began to come into focus. But whoever shall deny Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 10:33)
I did not understand, yet I could not turn away from the verse. I had not denied my Lord. What did He mean? I sat still and silent for a long time.
Slowly, my rambling thoughts began to come together. God was not just my savior, He was the lover of my soul; closer than a brother; nearer than my best friend.
Was it possible? Me? Insult my beloved Lord? Well, yes. I am often too busy or too tired to pray. Many times I lose myself in a laughing crowd rather than acknowledge my Friend. I even rush off to gather my gifts without saying, “Thank you, Father.” And, sometimes He calls me and I just don’t answer.
Yet, miracle of miracles, He loves me still and is always there. He searches for me if I tarry too long. He calls me by name. My Friend waits for me with open arms. Greater love has no one than this that one lay down his life for his friends.(John 15:13)
He laid down His life for me.