As I sit here this morning my heart is thankful, thankful for friends, both far and near. I am very aware that God has blessed me with people who I love very deeply and love me the same. I cannot begin to explain to you how God has worked in my life through the people he has placed into it. I have been challenged to love deeper, forgive quicker, try harder, and laugh more often, to give with a heart of abandonment, to hope with a sense of urgency and to believe with a sense of assurance.
I have come to understand that after the gift of Jesus Christ, and without Christ no gift really matters. But after the gift of Christ, the gift of friends is the gift that I hold most dear. And even though I have made mistakes in my past with those I love and had mistakes made against me by those I love, it is still the people that God has brought into my life that makes life all the better.
So I sit here and I am overwhelmed by the goodness of God, how He continues to give to me such blessed friendships, and how He continues to show me through these friends that he gives that He has not and will not give up on me, that his plans for me are to conform me into the image of Jesus Christ and to love me with a love that is so great that my heart, my mind, my soul, and my will are more and more after His. And the friends that he has placed into my life are being used to accomplish the goal He has for my life.
So I sit here and I am thankful for the two greatest gifts that a person could ever receive. Frist, the gift of Jesus Christ, which makes life worth living, and the gift of friends that helps us come to understand how much God loves us, and helps us to understand how better to love.
So to all of you that I have once or now call friends I would say. I am truly sorry and I ask your forgiveness if I have failed you in any way. If I have failed to be the friend God has called me to be. To any of you that I have not shared Christ with I ask that this Christmas season you would look at Jesus Christ once again and truly ask yourself how your life would be with Him in it. And for you who have stood by me as a friend I say thank you for loving one as broken, but one who is being changed by the love of God and by your love. My prayer this year is that I will be to you all the friend that God has called me to be.