What does it mean to be God’s friend?
Imagine two young boys. One boy says to the other boy, “Come and play with me.” To which the other boy replies, “I do not want to play with you.” The next day the same little boy asks the same question, and the other little boys tells him that he does not want to play with him. Every day this happens, day after day, week after week. One little boy wants to be friends with the other, but the other little boy wants nothing to do with him. Can they be friends while that boy refuses to play with him? No, they cannot.
Can we be friends with God while we remain indifferent or hostile toward him? Can we enjoy intimacy with God while we refuse to play the game he wants us to play? No, we cannot. God wants me to be his friend, and he wants you to be his friend. But this friendship can only begin when we begin to play the game he wants us to play with him. The game he wants us to play, is to trust and obey him.* If we do, and we do so on a regular basis, we will come to be good friends with God. Then our lives will be rich with love and intimacy. The more we play the game God wants us to play, the more we will come to love him and those whom he loves. (He even loves those who hate him.) He will begin to change us; we will become more like him. It is love that makes all things lovely. And it is only love, that can fill our hearts with all that makes life worth living.
God loves me more than I love myself. He knows what is best for me. He seeks my highest good. That is why I can trust him.
*Does this mean I have to do what some cleric tells me to do? Not at all. If you think obeying God means obeying someone who claims to be a priest or prophet, you would do well to read the following page about how God works through our conscience. See Conscience.