Thank You for Being a Friend


Sammi McCubbins
Selah Companion

My husband and I have been in Palm Desert, California, for two months. Our time away from everyday routines has provided great opportunities for relaxing, resting, reading, renewing, and even great restaurant reviewing. As the end of our visit approaches, I have reflected on the last six weeks of our time here, and I am repeatedly reminded of the power of close and personal relationships as I glance at my calendar. Spaces on my classic grid calendar are filled with dates, places, and times scheduled to be with long-time friends. I have always valued my close relationships, but as I remember being with our friends during these last six weeks, a greater appreciation for the value and importance of treasured relationships overwhelms me.

Could this awakening be attributed to the realization that frequency and intentionality are necessary to keep close relationships? Or could it be due to sharing fun and laughter at the “playground of sunshine and blue skies”? (However, this has been an unusually cool and wet season in the desert.) Or maybe it’s due to outings with friends to the latest goings-on about town. Or could it be the shocking and unexpected news of a friend’s death whom we hoped to meet for dinner in the coming week?

Friends are God’s gifts to us, and God loves us through them.”

Saint Augustine

Relationships – not career achievement, exercise, diet, or security – are among our most valuable gifts. Good friends are priceless!  Saint Augustine, a famous theologian and writer, is credited with this friendship quote: “Friends are God’s gifts to us, and God loves us through them.” During this season of Lent, I am reading through the Gospel of John and am struck by the numerous stories illustrating the importance Jesus placed on relationships, especially the stories of his cousin, John the Baptist, and friend of the bridegroom, the woman at the well, and the death of his friend, Lazarus.

Jesus’s entire life and death is an act of friendship that reveals several things about relationships. First, Jesus helps us see what is proper and healthy in our relationships. Second, Jesus allows us to see how spending time together nurtures meaningful relationships. And thirdly, Jesus helps us see how a close connection with him can strengthen our faith and change our lives forever through relationships.      

As I take another look at my grid calendar, I see love and care flowing from my long-lasting friendships and thank God for the gift of friends.

Sammi McCubbins


Loving God, thank you for the gift of friends. Thank you for the deep love and care that we feel through them. We lift our friends for your care today. Grant us your grace, patience, forgiveness, and love – that we might be better friends to those we love – and better able to reach out to those who may need us most. Amen.