The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

I have been blessed to be a part of a Ladies Bible Study for over 20 years. These ladies know “the good, the bad and the ugly” about me. We have been prayer partners through all life’s ups and downs. We are appropriately named The Early Birds, since we originally met at 6am. These ladies have been alongside of me during some of my greatest joys, and they have also seen me in my worst times of disappointment and desperation. I am so grateful for their friendship and spiritual wisdom.

The Early Birds are an eclectic group – wide distribution of ages, geographically dispersed, various seasons of life, different ethnic backgrounds / church denominations / political affiliations, etc. Periodically, the church where we all attended would do Small Group recruitment campaigns, however many of the new prospects would just keep on walking whenever we told them that we met at 6am. LOL! Must have been a little early for most of the people to join “The Birdies”.

We need people in our life, who will encourage us spiritually and strengthen our faith. We need people who will pray with us, believing that God will bring about good in every situation. We need people, who will hold us accountable and can speak truth, even if it is contrary to what we might desire to do.

We have that type of person in Jesus Christ. There’s a song called What a Friend We Have in Jesus, written in 1855 by Joseph M Scriven. He was a pastor and wrote this poem anonymously to his mother, who was living in Ireland, while he was in Canada. My twin brother played this song at our mother’s funeral, so it holds a special place in my heart:

What a friend we have in Jesus
All our sins and griefs to bear
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer

Oh, what peace we often forfeit
Oh, what needless pain we bear
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer

Have we trials and temptations?
Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged
Take it to the Lord in prayer

Can we find a friend so faithful
Who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness
Take it to the Lord in prayer

I am so very thankful that Jesus knows my every weakness, yet He still loves me unconditionally. He carried my sins on the cross and paid the debt that I deserved. He conquered death, so that I might have everlasting life. Everyday, He welcomes me with wide open arms to be in His presence to carry my sins, griefs, pain, trials, temptations, sorrows and weaknesses.

What a friend we have in JESUS!

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