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Few people have what they would call a “best” friend, someone who understands them completely and appreciates their value. Those who have such a friend may still risk being “unfriended.” When we’re feeling alone, what can we do?
Our choice of friends is limited.
To have friends, we need to be friendly. The Bible tells us that in Proverbs 18:24. Problem is, whether anyone becomes our friend depends on them, not us. It’s their choice after we choose to reach out to them.
Daddy was my best friend.
He wasn’t bothered by my interruptions, but was always eager to make time for me. In fact, he often included me in whatever he was doing. I was only four years old when I helped him nail new wood shingles on the backyard shed.
Helping him was its own reward.
All I did was sit on the roof, pull a shingle from the bundle, and hand it to him. Since he was happy to have me with him, contributing to his work, my feeling of self-worth soared. “You were a tremendous help,” he said, hugging me. Then came an unexpected surprise. He paid me two whole dollars, which in those days would buy 80 huge chocolate bars.
I never refused a chance to go somewhere with my father.
In the winter of 1950, I had just turned five years old when Daddy asked if I wanted to go with him to look for garnets in the hills outside Manhattan, Kansas. I saw plenty of rocks but no sparkling gems, so I wandered off to crouch in a nearby ravine and imagine Indians on the warpath, coming over the hill. I took careful aim with my pointed finger. “Pow! Pow!” Two Indians fell from their horses.
I needed to find shelter from the bitter cold.
My hands and feet were freezing. Our car was the only place to get out of the wind. When I slipped onto the seat on the driver’s side, I noticed the gas gauge. Empty! Feeling very much alone, without any hope of getting home, I cried so hard I could barely catch my breath.
Daddy’s arm around my shoulder warmed my heart.
I didn’t feel the cold air when the car door opened, and I barely heard him ask what was wrong. I pointed to the gas gauge and blubbered something about having no way to get home. Assuring me that everything would be okay, he turned the key in the ignition. With tear-filled blurry vision, I watched the indicator needle move up to show that we had a half-full tank.
Having my father with me made everything okay.
Over 25 years ago, Daddy left me to be with the Lord. I’ve lost many other friends, who had better things to do with their time. I’ve been unfriended, neglected, and betrayed. But I never have to feel alone, because my heavenly Father is the best friend I could ever have.
Be strong and courageous. You don’t have to fear anything or anyone if your Lord God is with you. You never have to be alone, because he will never abandon you. Just don’t you ever forsake him. — Deuteronomy 31:6