Fresh Connection

Fresh Connection

Three and half years is a reasonable amount of time to become good friends with someone. Jesus and his disciples spent most of their days together. Take away some days when they were apart and count for the time the disciples joined Jesus, and you still have at least two to three years of close friendship. Suddenly Jesus announces that he's leaving. This news was unexpected and not accepted by the disciples. "You can't leave!" "Why do you have to leave?" "Where are you going?" Jesus assures his friends that they will not be left to fend for themselves. Jesus also promises that he will come again. After his death, Jesus appears to the disciples several times and spends forty (40) days with them before he ascends to heaven. Their relationship was more than a teacher-student relationship. Jesus called them "friends." John 15:13-15.


Read John 15:12-27
  1. What example did Jesus leave his disciples about how they love each other? John 15:12, 17.
  2. What is the greatest demonstration of love for a friend? John 15:13
  3. John 15:14 seems to indicate that friendship with Jesus is conditional on obedience. How do you understand those words?
  4. What is the difference between a servant and a friend? John 15:15
  5. Who chose who to be friends in John 15:16?
  6. What is the cost of being counted among Jesus' friends? John 15:18-25
  7. Who is the helper, and what does he do? John 15:26-27


Part of being a disciple is learning to trust Jesus. In order to trust Jesus, one must spend time with him. We've heard this advice before. Yet, doing it requires intentionality. It just doesn't happen by itself. Friendships require the same. Jesus did chose us, but we need to chose him and make him, not just a part of our life, but to make him, our life.

When we are developing a friendship, at first, we don't know much about the other person. As we see each other more, at school, at work, in the neighborhood, or wherever else, we begin to know them more. We understand what they like, don't like, their habits, patterns, family dynamics, history, and many other things. We may not know why they do what they do, but then later on, it will be made clearer.

Jesus is inviting us to develop this kind of friendship with him. All the while, understanding, that we are not just in a friendship with a buddy, but with God. In this relationship with God we are learning about ourselves, about God, about life in general, our purpose, our goals, our future, how to deal with past and present situations.

What are ways in which we KNOW God better? Here are some suggestions
  1. Reading about God in the Bible.
  2. Praying. How do we know God through prayer?
  3. Sharing what you know about God and your experience with God (more in the next section).


How do you enhance your friendship with God through sharing (going)? As you interact with other people, you are living out your life, modeled after what you've read about God in the OT and lived out through Jesus in the NT. The cycle of discipleship isn't complete unless you GO (share). Jesus sent out his disciples to preach the gospel. He sent them in two's. Find a partner or another friend for encouragement and company as you go out and share. The activity of sharing feeds into the Knowing and Growing parts of your discipleship. When you share, you become aware of things you don't know. So you go back to the source, back to God, and to His Word. Also, you pray, ask for wisdom, you intercede for the person you spoke to about God. Then you GO back out. This cycle repeats itself, which helps us to mature in our faith. It's different for everyone, but give it a try.

Which area do you think needs more development in your discipleship?
  1. The knowing part of having enough information/experience?
  2. The growing part? Not much application of what I know to my own life.
  3. The sharing part? I tend to keep my religion/faith to myself.

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