You're the Ice to my Cream

Friends forever...always and in ALL ways! We have been talking about how important it is to have people in our lives that can help us get to where we need to be. Like the paralytic on the mat in Mark 2, perhaps we all need at least four solid things(people) to help carry us to where we need to be.
The first two posts on our mat were occupied by FAITH and HOPE. A powerful duo that always seems to help us better ourselves and get into a position to be blessed by God. On post three, we have LOVE.
Love ignites the project, the relationship, the church and keeps faith and hope alive. In fact scripture says that these three remain after all else is gone, faith, hope and love but the greatest of these is LOVE. Love covers a multitude of sins. Love never fails. Love looks for another way in when the door is crowded shut. It was love that took faith and hope to the roof. Without love, hope may have diminished and faith would have fizzled out. Love lets you imagine the best possible outcome: see it with spiritual eyes and convince you to take another step and find another way.
The fourth post may not stand out as you think about this illustration but it seems clear to me. The fourth post is JOY The JOY of the Lord IS our strength. In other words, there is no balance to carrying us through unless JOY takes its place. You see in Mark 2, love took them all to the roof but it was the JOY of seeing their friend healed that made a hole and lowered the man into his place of deliverance.
Why is all of this so important? Why do I need 4 posts or 4 people? Because you will have times when you have no power on your own to come forth…no strength to deliver. Connection is imperative. When Jesus saw these 4 things, he was inspired: power left his body and the man that could not move…the man that was immobile, stuck in neutral…was forgiven of his sins and healed. Why is it so important to be connected? The healing had nothing to do with the paralyzed man and everything to do with the four carrying him.
Here’s the good news: when you have faith, hope, love and joy; you have a way to get into position for success and healing even if you can’t do anything about it yourself. And here’s a bonus for you to remember…when you have the right four posts all placed in the right position, not only will they carry you but they will help you climb higher too! Friends are friends forever, if the Lord's the Lord of them. And a lifetime's not too long, to live as friends.