A Friend Who Doubles Your Joy and Divides Your Sorrow

Posted January 2, 2008

That astute wordsmith, Samuel Johnson, wisely advised, “Keep your friendships in good repair.” There’s hardly any conceivable life situation in which a close friend is not an asset. In the anguish of bereavement or in the exulting joy of celebration, the presence of a loyal and loving friend is a treasure, while the absence of a friend at such events is an unthinkable privation.

“You are my friends,” Jesus joyfully proclaimed. “I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business …. I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you” (In 15: 14-15).

It’s easy to overlook the tremendous implications of this privilege of having Jesus for a personal friend to whom we can turn with total confidence for this divine guidance and security in our every undertaking’ as he “makes known to us everything he has learned from his Father.” And to think he is only a whisper away!

His friendship becomes more meaningful if we cultivate it. We can do this by opening ourselves to the very thoughts of God through the Spirit of Jesus, “that we may understand what God has freely given us” (see 1 Corinthians 2:11-12). With this precious “knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding” (Col 1:9-10), we can daily grow in the knowledge of God. Let us listen more than speak to our friend. He has so much to tell us!

“One-Minute Meditations for Busy People” by Fr. John H. Hampsch, CMF