My stepfather is only one example of a man who has impacted my life as a result of his relationship with Christ. Throughout this series, I want to share with you about some of the other men who have impacted my life solely because of their relationship with Jesus. I believe as I share that you, too, will connect with them and discover for yourself how God has always had a plan for you, is working it out in your life and will never leave you.

Who are your friends? Last night I was talking with one of my friends. She said that she had gotten a new job and wanted to share with me about it. She was very excited and at peace. She and her husband had been struggling financially for quite some time. Due to our country's economic situation, her husband's job was eliminated. Because he is a draftsman for the housing industry, he has not been able to find work in over a year with the exception of a few freelance projects. In that year they have also had a child. He has become a stay-at-home dad while his wife works. She had been praying for a better job with more benefits to help her family.

We continued to talk about all of the details the job would entail and how things would be better for her. Then, what she said next really surprised me. She said, "Kris, I thought of who I could call to tell this great news and all I thought of was you, as I don't have any friends anymore." "No, that can't be true," I responded. She went on to say, "No, seriously, I don't have any friends anymore." To that I said, "Well a lot of times when you get married your friends change." Both she and her husband got married in their late 30s, so most of their friends are still single. They have not really had the time to pursue new married friends, plus the fact they are struggling financially (so you aren't going out as much) and emotionally (not a lot to give out to others) hasn't help either.

We then discussed the purpose and value of friends. I told her that I have had so many people come in and out of my life. When I was young, and people left my life, I always assumed I had done something wrong. I would spend so much energy trying to fix whatever was wrong only to end up in the same place, without them. I simply could not figure out why some "friends" would leave me. I thought if you were a friend, it was for life. Sure, I knew some things could change the friendship. For example, when my friends get married, I expect to not see them as much and especially if they have kids. Then there's also the fact that they move not only within the same city, but also out of state. But what about the others? The ones who are still in your life such as those you go to Sunday school or small group with or who are in the same circle of hang-out friends. Why would those friends stop being friends?

I told her that I figured it out a long time ago. Our friends are not about us. Well, I mean, yes, there is to some degree it is about us as the Lord didn't leave us on this earth to be alone but in community. But, the reason we have friends is more about HIS purpose versus our own. I learned if we are really here to have a relationship with God that glorifies Him—and as a result of that relationship, a relationship with others—then guess what? Our friends will change.

Now sometimes "we" are the ones who cause the relationship to break up, and we should do whatever we can to reconcile. But what I am talking about here are the friends who simply disappear. You stopped e-mailing each other, stopped having lunch, stopped playing golf or going to the movies. Just stopped.

Why Lord? Why did they leave me? What did I do wrong? Guess what? Nothing. You did nothing wrong. Get this:  if you are going to have room to make new friends, for His purpose, then some of the old ones have got to go! Ugh! We were not put on this earth to live in a bubble with the same set of friends our whole life. Even Andy Taylor from The Andy Griffith Show changed friends. Even Barney left Andy.