SUNDAY, JANUARY 24, 2021, 10:00 AM - ONLINE ONLY
REAL RELATIONSHIPS with April Yamasaki, Forging Friendship in a Lonely World
Our returning guest speaker for the first few months of 2021 is April Yamasaki. She will be leading us in the discovery of Real Relationships through Friendship, Singleness & Marriage, and Family. April Yamasaki writes on spiritual growth and Christian living both online and in print publications, including Christian Century, Christianity Today, The Redbud Post, Godspace, Vision: A Journal for Church and Theology, Leader, and Rejoice! Her books include On the Way with Jesus; Four Gifts: Seeking Self-Care for Heart, Soul, Mind, and Strength; and Sacred Pauses: Spiritual Practices for Personal Renewal.
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Real Relationships Series with April Yamasaki
January 24: Forging Friendship in a Lonely World
February 28: Honouring Singleness and Marriage
March 28: Valuing Family
54 percent of Canadians feel lonely or isolated – Ipsos Poll, April 2020
Loneliness, a “growing health epidemic” - Vivek Murthy, former U.S. Surgeon General, 2017
Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art....It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things that give value to survival. – C.S. Lewis
A POSITIVE VIEW OF FRIENDSHIP
A friend loves at all times. – Proverbs 17:17
I have called you friends. – John 15:15
A MORE CYNICAL VIEW
Everyone is the friend of one who gives gifts. – Proverbs 19:6
The rich have many friends. – Proverbs 14:20
A REALISTIC VIEW
One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. – Proverbs 18:24
PHILEMON: A CASE STUDY OF FRIENDSHIP
1 From Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus, and from Timothy, our brother.
To Philemon, our dear friend.
Paul’s friendship with Philemon
4 I always thank my God when I mention you in my prayers.
14 But I did not want to do anything without asking you first so that any good you do for me will be because you want to do it, not because I forced you.
THINKING THE BEST OF ONE ANOTHER
21 I write this letter, knowing that you will do what I ask you and even more.
Paul’s friendship with Onesimus
10 I am pleading with you for my child Onesimus, who became my child while I was in prison.
11 In the past he was useless to you, but now he has become useful for both you and me.
17 So if you consider me your partner, welcome Onesimus as you would welcome me.
18 If he has done anything wrong to you or if he owes you anything, charge that to me. 19 I, Paul, am writing this with my own hand. I will pay it back.
Faith and a network of friends
SOMETIMES FRIENDS FAIL
Even my close friend, someone I trusted, one who shared my bread, has turned against me. – Psalm 41:9
Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. – Matthew 26:41
Friends can make us feel even more lonely.
GOD IS OUR FOREVER FRIEND
God has said, “I will never leave you; I will never abandon you.” – Hebrews 13:5; Deuteronomy 31:6
QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION AND DISCUSSION
Provided by April Yamasaki