Friday, January 21, 2011

For Andrew

As I was running on the treadmill just now, listening to Gungor (Check it if you haven't heard of them, I remembered Andrew, and all of the sudden everything seemed right in the world again.

The greatest love and the deepest truth is that God is love. This is what Gungor reminded me in their song "People of God." This kind of love is what holds everything else together. What does this have to do with Andrew?

Let me back this up, Andrew is my best male friend. He has been ever since we took biology together; I had just got my license so I would pick him up and we would go together. We were the only two in the class who conversed, really, and so we were dissecting partners, study buddies, and fast friends.

We had choir together, played soccer together, had all the same friends and even played on worship sets together, all through high school. Throughout high school and college, we have watched each other go through guys and girls, date and pretend to date, love and lose, love and learn, get hurt, get really, really hurt.

Along with that, we have watched each other spiritually grow. Every time we would see the other one do something stupid, we'd think, I trust them. I love them. I want to think the best of them, that they are making the right choice. Let me tell you, Andrew watched me make some bad choices - and Andrew loved me through them. We've talked recently about whether or not we should have called each other out more, and that is still a discussion we are having. Court is out.

So, have feelings been involved? Well, I think at first, we both thought hey this person is attractive and loves God. We should date, right? No. No, it didn't quite work like that. Because our friendship took on a brother and sister kind of friendship. Andrew looked out for me, fought for me. I listened to him and gave him advice. I defended his name. We have never expressed feelings for each other; jealousy, yes, but actual romantic feelings, no. Instead of possibly ruining our friendship and deep love for each other by trying to force a relationship, we have become the greatest of friends. I have truly never had a friend like him.

Because of this friendship, we can say the most honest, incredible things to each other. We can't be together without talking about God, about the hold He has on our lives, not in an over-spirtualizing way, but a genuine trust that goes years back. Andrew has earned the right to go deep into my spiritual soul, in the most pure way you can imagine. I can barely describe it. I have this friendship with several girls, too, by the way.

Emily, his older sister and I were driving in the front seat of the car and Andrew was riding in the back, staring out the dark, frosted windows this past Christmas break. I was saying something about identity, I think, and Andrew interrupted saying

"Emma, you are so attractive!"

"Uh, what, Andrew?" I reply, amused because I know he doesn't mean what the word usually implies.

"Ah, maybe that is the wrong word....I just mean you have changed so much in the past two years. You are so attractive because of Christ in you. I just want to be with you."

I smile. "Thank you Andrew. You know, I have always felt that way about you."

His sister then audibly "awed" and that was it. We drove on.

I don't deserve the praise that Andrew gives, but the truth in those words is that Christ is in both of us. Through everything, we have been seeking Him. I want to be near Andrew not because I want to marry him, or because I secretly have feelings for him, but because I love him. I love him in the way we are meant to love all people. Imagine if we had this friendship with all of our brothers and sisters in Christ! Those words can sound like such a cliche, especially to my ears, after being at a Bible school for years, where we all try and usually fail miserably at having successful friendship with the opposite sex.

My dear friendship with Andrew, truly my brother and best friend, gives me hope. Hope that love is real. That friendship love is good! We need it.

I think this ends my posts on love for a while. God is defining for me what love is through His Scripture, through listening to Him and through His people. Thank you all for being a part of that.

Go love.


The Prude said...

One of the most wonderful things about heaven, I think, besides seeing our Saviour face to face, is that we will have that love for EVERYONE. People born thousands of years before us, in other cultures, or even people we had damaged relationships with on earth.
Seems as though God has given you a little heaven foretaste.

Emma said...

I think He has, too, and that is a lovely way of realizing it. We must be quick to restore relationships as best we can here, but that is a much desired hope that ALL will be perfected when we are finally fully glorified.

Jamie Janosz said...

Friendships like that are so rare - especially when it is a male/female friendship. I remember having a good good friend like that and I had the same conflicted feelings about whether or not this would every or should ever be a romantic relationship. In the end, it was not. We are still friends, and I am glad. Lovely post - I'll read more!

Life with Kaishon said...

He sounds like an absolutely wonderful friend. How wonderful that you can share deep thoughts with him. I love that you share your thoughts about Christianity and growing closer to Jesus.

A Circle of Quiet said...

I have a few male friends who had the decency to marry women I love, and we are friends to this day -- they are treasures, slices of heaven. I am so glad you have Andrew and that he has you.


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