Tuesday, February 8, 2011

A Tribute To My Friends

I hardly know how to put this tribute down in words ‘cause most of the time God’s grace, mercy and love shown through my friends has been indescribable….

When I accepted Jesus as my Saviour I can’t remember having any real friends. I had colleagues at work, old school acquaintances, ex-army buddies and such like ……but no friends. Oh yes and I was a ‘real friendly’ guy. Then God saw fit to bless me with friends. I soon came to realise that I did not have much of a clue of how to be a friend but God in His infinite wisdom through His Son and His Holy Spirit taught me how to be a friend. So I now have an amazing bunch of people, who accept me for who I am, support me, encourage me and teach me along this walk with our Saviour. Of course I now have the ability to do this for my friends as well. Before Christ came into my life it was just tooooooo much trouble to do any of that.

There is a small group of men who have continued to meet with each other, over a period of eight years, early on every alternative Saturday morning for fellowship and prayer. I am blessed and privileged to be part of this group. The support and encouragement that has come from this group has been incredible. We also hold each other accountable. We are not just ‘nice’ to each other but we tell each other the truth but we speak this truth in love (Ephesians 4:15).

So we have celebrated together, we have wept together , we have disciplined each other, taught each other, loved each other, we have served the body of Christ together and we have been there for each other when our loved ones have died. Oh yes we have also had so much fun together as well.

Now these friends of mine in this small band of men are no soft touches. They are rough and tough and straight talking but these attributes help us all in the group to be real and we learn how to be the husbands, fathers, leaders and men of God that we are called to be.

You see some of my friends in the pic above, most of us from the Saturday group are there and some of our sons as well……that outing was a lot of fun.

Now me and my buddies are far from perfect, we fall and we fail, we do and say the wrong things. What is really incredible is that God has given us each other to be there for one another and to remind us of our incredible Saviour when we forget about the depths of His mercy, grace and love. For that I am eternally grateful beyond what I can say in words…..even if I continued to type out this post for the next fifty years. All I can say is a humble thank you.

PS. You know the friends you have in the body of Christ will be your friends for eternity!!


Words: Deborah D. Smith
Music: Michael W. Smith

Packing up the dreams God planted
In the fertile soil of you
Can't believe the hopes He's granted
Means a chapter in your life is through
But we'll keep you close as always
It won't even seem you've gone
'Cause our hearts in big and small ways
Will keep the love that keeps us strong


And friends are friends forever
If the Lord's the Lord of them
And a friend will not say never
'Cause the welcome will not end
Though it's hard to let you go
In the Father's hands we know
That a lifetime's not too long to live as friends.

With the faith and love God's given
Springing from the hope we know
We will pray the joy you'll live in
Is the strength that now you show

But we'll keep you close as always
It won't even seem you've gone
'Cause our hearts in big and small ways
Will keep the love that keeps us strong



Tamela's Place said...

What an awesome group of friends you have Locty.. It is hard these days to find true friends. Those that will still love one another when the truth must be heard are hard people to find.. You are truly blessed!

Tammy :)

LoCTY said...

Thanks Tammy I do so humbly know that!!


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