Kansas Bob said that the hardest thing about engaging God is engaging my heart.
This series is about finding a way to stir our hearts toward Him. A fresh sight of His face can put wings on our feet. If God is kind, this series will never end. And if God grace abounds, it will be worth reading. :-)
Jesus had ministering servants, angels, while He was here on earth. We seem them a time or two in the gospels. He also called His disciples servants, for a while. And we are His servants still, but only in part. Our friendship with Him is a much bigger deal.
Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.
Being the servant of God is an honor beyond anything to which we might aspire. In Isaiah and in the Revelation, the angels stand before the Throne, and cry out, "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty." They are privileged to worship Him. But Jesus promotes His disciples above those angels. He acknowledges them as His friends.
What do you look for in a friend?
Presumably, not someone to follow you around all day, extolling your virtues. ;-) [Though, reading Dorkman is causing me to see this sentence in a different light.]
That's not what God is looking for in a friend, either. What He is looking for is much, much harder. He is looking for a partner to share His life, His experiences, His plans. God is looking for His equal.
And He has found that in you.
Forgive me if I don't know whether that statement needs to be defended. Do you find that controversial, or do you accept it as a glorious, but elementary part of the faith? I will offer this one brief defense. We are to be the bride of Christ, and marriage partners are to be equally yoked. God would never violate the words He gave to Paul. Ergo, He finds His yokemate in us.
The relationship we have with God is not that of puppy to master, nor yet of servant to master. We are members of the promised helpmeet of God, and He treats us as friends.
Friends do not worship each other, but share each other's lives. They laugh with the good things and cry with the bad, together. They go with each other to the hard stuff, and to the fun stuff. They wait in the courtroom and the hospital to hear how things went. And they check out plays and parks. They share life.
He respects you more than you do.
And that is why He shares things with you that you may not understand. Gifts? Servants don't get gifts, but wages. Suffering? He knows that He has endured suffering, and that you will overcome it, too. Enemies? He had to face the worst and overcame.
He has promised us that where He went, we will follow.
Greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world.