“But you, dear friends, must build each other up in your most holy faith….” Jude 1:20a (NLT)
Any boy scout or girl scout worth their cookies knows that when you go hiking in the wilderness you should never go alone. “Buddy up!” It’s a simple rule that resonates with so much wisdom for so many reasons. Even on a good and safe hike, we need companionship. There’s always opportunities to give one another a lift, challenge one another to push ourselves, and encourage one another to keep moving. If, God forbid, things go wrong we need someone who can help us, provide for us or who can go for help.
“Buddy up!” is as equally important on a spiritual journey. God said it at the very beginning: It’s not good for us to be alone. The whole thrust of Jude’s short and sweet letter is the encouragement to be careful with whom we buddy up. If we’re not careful, we can choose companions who will lead us astray, look out only for themselves, and selfishly abandon us when things get difficult in order to save their own necks. The companions we need are those who will always believe the best in us, always hope the best for us, always trust us to seek the after the right path and who always persevere with us through trials on it.
Today, I’m grateful for my friends and companions on this sojourn. Those who walked the journey with me for a season, as well as those who are companions for life. Choose wisely those with whom you walk life’s road. They influence the journey more than any of us generally realize.