Is it possible to be friends with God?
The Son of God says it is. Jesus says it is not only possible, but it is a reality; this friendship is real; this friendship exists between each of us and Jesus.
We know what good friends are like. We have our friends over for birthday parties and celebrations and anniversaries. We invite our friends to come over our house for dinner, or to go out. We invite our friends over to ride bikes, or skip rope, or watch a movie.
Everything is better with a friend around, because our friends make us feel good. They make us feel surrounded by love. They make us feel secure, and happy.
Just as we invite our friends over to our house, Jesus invites us over to his house every Sunday to celebrate, to rejoice. This celebration is called a mass. It is like our souls are on a spiritual moon bounce, or trampoline. It makes us feel good. It is like a heavenly carnival, with experiences which make us know that God is here with us, and that we are loved beyond our wildest dreams.
Yes, every Sunday Jesus invites us over to his house. He has a meal - a spiritual banquet. We help prepare the feast. We sing, we respond, we pray, we rejoice. And Jesus wants us to know all His friends- so we greet each other; we offer each other peace; and we receive the Eucharist together.
Jesus is the perfect host. He is the perfect friend. He never gossips about us to the angels; never rolls his eyes at us. He is always encouraging us, because He loves us.
Jesus is our biggest cheerleader.
We know that Jesus will always forgive us, no matter what we have done. He is the friend who waits at the door; waits for us to knock; our friend never refuses to open the door; He is always there waiting.
He loves each one of us equally. As St. Peter said, Jesus shows no partiality. So, we are never in competition for God’s love- there’s enough of God’s love to go around.
We didn’t earn this invitation. It comes to us because of grace, the favor, of God. And, we never have to feel guilty because we did not earn it.
We come to this altar - to be part of this celebration- to receive this Eucharist – because Jesus, our friend, has invited us over to his house.
We come here today at mass, to accept Jesus’ invitation to be his friend. He offers his friendship to each one of us. And in this friendship, Jesus is always with us- we are never alone.
Jesus knows that life is too much for us to do on our own; Jesus knows that we need a friend: to help us; to comfort us; to be with us all the time.
Maybe today, at this mass, we are finding Jesus for the first time, or maybe we haven’t been over to Jesus’ house for a while, and we maybe we are here so we can find Jesus once again as our friend. We can re-connect.
We can laugh, we can let Jesus puts his arms around us, and we can cry with joy.
Yes, it is possible to be a friend with God, and we have found that friend in Jesus.