Why Did My Friend Go Away?
Bible Reading: Romans 8:35-39
Nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:39
After living for several years in a foster home, Holly had built a close group of friends at her church. One summer Holly went away with a bunch of them for a weeklong church camp. What a week! She couldn’t wait to get home and tell her family all about it. But minutes after she arrived back home, her foster parents broke the news that she had to leave the next day to live in a home in another state. The authorities in charge of supervising foster children had made up their minds without talking to Holly or her foster parents. There was nothing they could do to fight the decision. So the next day she had to leave.
When Holly was tossed into a strange new place, she felt ripped from her friends and family. For months her heartache was constant.
You’ve probably formed strong bonds with the people you love—so that when your parents spend a weekend away by themselves, you miss them. Or when you’re away from friends and family for a retreat or camp, you get homesick.
Those are small separations that end quickly. But sooner or later we all face a loss or separation that can’t be undone. Even if you never face a situation as severe as Holly’s, loneliness and sadness can hit you from many directions:
Everyone grows up. Martina found that as she grew up, her friends no longer shared her interests or sense of right and wrong.
People move. Steven had his friends yanked from his life when his dad was promoted and his family moved cross-country.
Families break up. When Brandi’s parents divorced, she wound up living far enough from her old friends to make it almost impossible to see them.
Loved ones die. Tim found that there’s nothing as painful as the ache of losing a friend to death—and it hurts whether you lose a parent, grandparent, sibling, friend, or even a pet.
Every relationship will someday change. That’s not a cheery thought. But here’s a thought that puts all of our shifting friendships in perspective: Jesus will always be there for us. He won’t move away or die. His feelings toward us won’t change.
Not only is Jesus a faithful friend, he goes right beside us when the people we call friends are changing and rearranging. Jesus is the one friend we can never lose!
TALK: Do you have a lost friendship that is making you lonely right now? How can Jesus help?
PRAY: Jesus, we’re grateful that you stick with us even when our other friends aren’t around.
ACT: Be a friend to someone who has recently lost a friend.