Friendships in Christ
Directing Our Way to You Today
"Now may our God and
Father Himself and Jesus our Lord direct our
way to you;"
1 Thessalonians 3:11, Page
I have a friend who
seeks direction in his life. He never
went straight from high school to college,
and in his mid twenties, has only completed
a few college courses. He lives at
home and does not have a full-time job.
I have another friend seeking direction in
life. He will graduate from college in
December, but has already decided that he
dislikes the work he has trained for.
Both of my friends face the same question,
what will I do with my life? What
direction shall I take.
You see, one of my friends will be seeking
direction for His Father God, and the Jesus
His Lord. The other friend will be
looking in the mirror and deciding what to
do. In our lives, we have to make many
different decisions, and some of them make
real differences for the rest of our lives.
We need direction and we need it from God.
In 1 Thessalonians 3:11, Paul describes how
he finds direction. He has been
telling the Thessalonians for nearly three
chapters how much he loves them, how much he
longs to see them, and his plans for
visiting them. Now, he shares how the
ministry team wants to go and visit them,
but only under the direction of the Father
and Lord Jesus. For Paul, he counted
upon God providing guidance at the right
time and the right way. Let us take a
look at how God guides us, using Paul as an
First, God guides us by developing
relationships for His glory. Paul was
always choosing between (1) making new
friends, and sharing the Gospel in new
places, and (2) returning to see friends in
places where he had already witnessed God
planting churches. The ministry team
sought direction from God, and they
understood that God would lead them along
the lines God had already started in their
lives. Paul had a calling to be the
apostle to the Gentiles, and gifted by God
for that purpose. God will always use
your life by using your spiritual gifts for
Second, faith in God supports all of our
decisions. We must really believe that
God has a plan for our lives, and He really
will direct our plans. He does not
leave us looking in the mirror at ourselves,
but rather looking at God our Father and the
Lord Jesus for guidance.
Third, notice for a moment the terms Paul
used here. He looks for guidance from
his Father, a term of power and endearment.
I heard a man say once, "Why should I ask
for my father's guidance? I am twenty-five
years old." Of course his father was
sitting right next to him, and he still
lived with his father, and ate his father's
food. The other term Paul used was
Lord Jesus. The term Lord has special
comfort and meaning in the context of
seeking guidance. While we happily
acknowledge Jesus as Lord in many contexts,
we should follow Paul's lead here in
realizing that the sovereignty of Jesus
Christ certainly extends to planning our
lives with supernatural power, love and
vision. In one sense, our future
amounts to obeying the commands of Jesus.
We will not give Jesus commands about our
future, but listen to His commands about our
Fourth, often we have our own hopes and
desires about our lives. The Father
and the Lord Jesus listen to us in prayer,
and we let them know our hopes and desires.
Ultimately, however, we invite our spiritual
friends to pray for us too, that we might
follow the leading of our Father and the
Fifth, God has a purpose for your life.
As we live for God, we begin to understand
that purpose for our lives, and how our
lives become intertwined with other lives.
God uses us for His purposes. We will
not see our purpose in a mirror, but in the
Word of God. We learn it in prayer,
both alone and in groups. We hear it
in the wise counsel of our friends.
So, we learn some more about building strong
friendships in Christ.
● Strong bonds of friendship form
when we pray that God will lead our lives as
Father and under the direction of the Lord
● Strong bonds of friendship grow when
we watch God build relationships under His
leading to meet new people and develop their
faith and ours under His loving care and
● We harm our bonds of friendship when
we only look in the mirror for directions.
Spiritual friendships depend upon everyone
walking under the guidance of God the Father
and the Lord Jesus. On a worldwide
basis, we walk together in Christ.
Application for Today
Today, I want to encourage my friends
seeking direction from God. God wants
them to know their Father and the Lord Jesus
both love them, and wants to direct their
lives for God's glory. Who will you be
seeking direction from today?