Union Bethel RZUA Church
Pastor: Rev. Dr. Lewis Knight, Sr.
Family & Friends Day
April 27, 2014
Good afternoon. It's good to be back at my home church of Union Bethel R.Z.U.A! Happy Friends and Family Day from the Thompson Family! It's good to see all of my family and friends that I haven’t seen in a long time. Since I have joined this great Fraternity, Omega Psi Phi, I have learned a lot about friendship. Our founders have made a fraternity based on the motto “Friendship is essential to the soul” and put uplift as one of our cardinal principals.
Before pledging, I was self-centered but I have learned as brothers or black citizens we are doing our community a disservice if we succeed and don’t offer a hand to bring up the next person behind us. You can have this type of friendship without a fraternity or sorority because the church is the foundation to these organizations. You have brothers and sisters in Christ just like I have in my fraternity, that you can call your friend that will help you in any situation life brings. A TRUE FRIEND IS THE GREATEST GIFT GOD CAN GIVE YOU! A friend is the person to help you without hesitation when you need help. A friend is a person to care for you when you are ill and comfort you when you are sad. A friend is happier than you when they know you are happy. A friend is sad when they see you suffering. A friend encourages you when you feel helpless. A friend companies you when you feel lonely. A friend gives you correct advice when they don’t know what to do. A FRIEND!
Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 NIV: reads that "Two are better than one, because they have good return for their work; If one falls down his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!"
Neighbor…..Will you help me up?
There are three points that we need to be a true friend: TIME, LOVE, LIFE
You can’t be a true friend, if you do not spend time with them. You must get to know this person and everything about them. Not because that’s what friends do but because you have an interest in knowing them. When you know someone you know how they would react, and know how they think in certain situations. You know what they enjoy doing. When something is wrong, you have a sixth sense that something isn’t right.
It means a lot when you have a reliable friend in your corner. When times get tough, you have a genuine friend who has the best interest for you at heart and is willing to do anything to make sure you are good. Sometimes it just takes someone saying that they have your back or assuring a friend that they are with you or give me a call if you need me.
This could be your friend, spouse, or sibling. It is a person you truly have a connection with. No matter when they call, the hour, day, or holiday, if you are stuck on the side of the road, they will go out of their way to make sure you are safe. That’s true friendship
Now remember, there are different types of friends: Lifelong Friends, Temporary Friends.
1.) Lifelong Friends is a friend that has been with you before you have had any success. These friends have sustained hardships and they have. your best interest at heart. Distance doesn’t break your relationship because you truly want the best for them. When they have success you celebrate with them and glad that they are doing well no matter the situation they are in.
2.) Temporary Friends come and go. They are there for a certain amount of time. They might get envious, jealous, and they let arguments or disagreements come between the friendships. Friends sometime fight but after the storm they squash things out to let them know they are still friends. Temporary friends are there when being friends with you is beneficial to them. In college, when I brought my car to college as a sophomore a lot of people who were my associates wanted to be my friend. They would ask for rides to the store and ask for favors. When times got hard they abandoned me and I couldn’t find them when I needed them. These are temporary friends.
In order for you to love someone as God loves his servants, we must love ourselves. Many people are looking for love but don’t love their selves. We must have a set of core values and beliefs and stand firm when situations arise. These values are usually instilled into you at a young age. You will know what you will accept and will not. These core values will determine which type of friends you will associate yourself with. Groups of friends have similar ideas and are likeminded in what they believe in. The saying is true, birds of a feather flock together. If you are a gossiper, an instigator, liar, cheater, smoker, or drinker, more times than likely you will attract the same type of people. But if we display our characteristics of friendly, caring, loving, thoughtful, and Christ-like values, we will have friends that will always be by your side. If we love ourselves in this manner and hang around the right crowd, we can truly say with confidence that we are treating our neighbor as if we would treat ourselves.
Men sometimes have a problem with telling other men we love them, but there is nothing wrong with telling another man you love them especially your friend in Christ. It took me many years to understand that expressing your love for someone isn’t homosexual. Media has shown that when someone mentions love to a fellow man it is deemed homosexual. Society has a negative image of the black family negatively. Single parents, broken homes, drug addiction, gun violence, just to name a few. Society never tells the story of local success stories that encourages the youth to do better. They say that we have low aspirations and morals. I stand before you to tell you that this is a lie. We have a lot of blacks that are very successful and these people are in the community helping children, lawyers, doctors, chemists, military officials, teachers, and business owners. Our youth must be taught this at a young age to love thy neighbor as we would like to treated in return. This will stop the violence of todays and the future’s generation.
a. John 15:13 NIV: Greater Love has no one than this that he lay down his life for his friends.
b. There are certain friends that you would put your own life in jeopardy to protect them. A true friend would lay their life down without even thinking because they truly have a close bond with that person. This is how friendship is essential to the soul. It makes me feel good that I have friends in life that would do so much as to lay their life down for me if need be.
c. Jesus laid His life on the line for us. He died on Calvary, so we can have everlasting life. If we are striving to be like Jesus, we must act as He does. Walk as he walks. Stand firm as He stood. Pray as He prayed. He treated His enemies as friends, and when they wronged Him, He forgave them. This is the ultimate display of friendship.
CONCLUSION:s from the toolbar.
All these characteristics are found in God. He is your one true friend who will never leave you nor forsake you. He can provide for all your needs. When you have to climb mountains, He will move them. I’m a walking testimony that God is capable of any and everything. Prayer works! He has blessed me beyond belief and even when I wasn’t worthy of the blessings He continued to bless me. Worldly friends are essential to the soul but having a friendship with God is a necessity. When you have everyone against you just know you can always count on God to have your back. He will always love you, He will give you time but you have to take time to get to know Him, and He has already died for our sins. Anything you want in a friend is in God. If you don’t know God, I challenge you to get to know Him. If no one answers your question of will you help me, KNOW THAT GOD WILL ALWAYS HELP YOU!