Some people are surprised when they learn that I test out as an introvert. An “expressive” introvert. But an introvert nonetheless. I’ve taken the Myers/Briggs, the Briggs and Stratton, and the Disc Personality tests. And I come out as an introvert.
My daughter Amy is the same. Being around people too much exhausts us. She says she wants to buy me that T-shirt that says, “INTROVERTS UNITE! IN YOUR OWN HOMES! BY YOURSELVES!” (I’d wear that T-shirt).
All of that to say that the Lord has a tremendous sense of humor. He is working on me this year to stretch me. It looks like I’ll be writing two books on . . . friendship! I’ve been working on the issue of friendship evangelism as I’m processing the idea of the Lord Jesus being “a friend of sinners” (Mt. 11:19). That work is tentatively entitled Unlike Jesus: One Area Where Jesus-Followers Excel. I don’t know if that will be the final title (it’s kind of negative), but I’m convinced that Satan has won and continues to win a great victory by convincing believers that the fewer non-Christian friends they have the godlier they are. We confuse the command in James 4:4 not to be friends of the world with the idea that that must mean we can’t be friends of sinners.
It also looks likely that I will be writing a book on friendship in general. The working title for that second work is With Friends Like These . . . Biblical Friendships from Job to Jesus. This project will allow me to survey friendship in both the Old and New Testaments (I’m presently working on Abraham, “the friend of God”), consider Job and his friends (who theologically “mug” him for thirty chapters), think about how Jesus was a friend to His disciples (taking particular notice of His response to His sick friend Lazarus in John 11), and include some material on believers’ being friends of sinners.
I’m going to ask you, the reader, for something very specific. Would you pray for me and these two writing projects at least once a week over the next few months? If you agree to do this, you may let me know privately through my email (email@example.com) or publicly in the comment section below. THANKS!