"A Loyal Friend"
December 26, 2009
A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. Proverbs 18:24
Friends and family move away, pass away, and a few just forget us.
Indeed, it's a rare individual who has a friend so close their loyalty is a given and faithfulness something which can be counted on.
Such a loyal, faithful friend was Hachi.
Let me tell you about Hachi. Hachi was a dog that lived in Japan and went to the railroad station with his master each morning and then greeted him each evening.
That's the way things remained until one night in 1925 when Hachi's master died while he was away in another town. Still, his owner's passing didn't stop Hachi.
Every night, for more than 10 years, Hachi went to the train station. There he would wait for an hour and then, slowly, sadly, he would return home.
Hachi's loyalty impressed the nation of Japan. The government erected a statue of the dog on the spot where Hachi had waited. It also sent small statues of the dog to all the schools in the country.
This the government did because it knew Hachi's kind of loyalty is a hard thing to come by.
Indeed, a person can go his entire life without ever finding a friend so faithful.
Of course, as a Christian, you don't have to look very far, do you? Yesterday, we celebrated the birth of God's Son, our Savior. Jesus' Bethlehem arrival was the beginning of an earthy ministry that would take the Christ to betrayal, rejection, misunderstanding, false arrest, and crucifixion. All this Jesus would endure so we might be forgiven and saved.
Now, today, the risen Lord continues to show His faithfulness to His people. He stands at the ready -- ready to hear our prayers -- ready to carry our burdens -- ready to take us home when our lives are over. Jesus continues to keep His promise to be with us always.
It's something worth remembering the day after Christmas.
From a devotion originally written for "By the Way"
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, for being there, for watching, protecting, guiding, loving, saving, You have my gratitude. May I go forward in faith and tell the world of my Savior. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries