The Lord is close to all who call on him, yes, to all who call on him in truth.Psalm 120:1 (NLT)
Have you ever had a “friend” who only wanted to hang out with you when there was nothing else to do, and no other good options for people to socialize with? All of a sudden, they become your best buddy, even though you were their last choice of people to spend time with at the moment. It’s an awesome feeling, right? To be someone’s last choice makes one feel all warm and cozy inside – fulfilled even. No? What do you mean no? Why wouldn’t it make us feel that way? Because it’s a relationship of convenience, that’s why. There’s no value in it.
Since we are most likely in agreement that treating “friends” this way is not a true friendship, or even healthy, let me throw down for a moment. Why do we do this with Jesus?
Far too often, we only call on Jesus when we need something. Generally, it’s in moments of distress – something has gone horribly wrong. Don’t get me wrong, we should call on Jesus when things are not going well, He is our Savior after all. But, if we live our lives apart from Him the rest of the time, then the only value we find in Him is that He can bail us out of trouble.
This is why this verse today helps us get some perspective. “The Lord is close to all who call on him, yes, to all who call on him in truth.” It’s that last part that sticks it to us. What does it mean to “call on Him in truth?” Quite simply, it’s when we call on Him as a result of a relationship, not treating Him as a magic genie that comes when we need something. Is our relationship with Him true, or are we just trying to use Him to get us out of trouble?
Here’s the challenge, then. In order to have an authentic relationship with someone, including Jesus, we must invite them into our lives, not just when it’s convenient for us, or when we need something, but at all times. If this is supposed to be a best-friend relationship with God, then we need to start treating Him like a best friend, and not the kid that we only hang out with when there’s no other good options.
Invite Jesus into every area of life. He should be present in our friendships. He should be present in our romantic relationships. He should be present in our school life. He should be present in our home life. He should be present in our financial life. He should be present in our career. In short, Jesus should be the friend we always hang out with.