John Maxwell and Dan Reiland shared the following story in their book, “The Treasure of a Friend”:
Though Jim was just a little older than Phillip and often assumed the role of leader, they did everything together. After college, they decided to join the Marines. By a unique series of circumstances, they were both sent to Germany together where they fought side by side in one of history’s ugliest wars.
One sweltering day during a fierce battle, amid heavy gunfire, bombing, and close quarters combat, they were given the command to retreat. As the men were running back, Jim noticed that Phillip had not returned with the others.
Jim begged his commanding officer to let him go back after his friend, but in an outrage, the officer denied the request, saying it would be suicide. Risking his own life, Jim disobeyed and went after Phillip. His heart pounding, praying, and out of breath, he ran into gunfire, calling out for Phillip. A short time later, his platoon saw him hobbling across the field carrying a limp body in his arms.
Jim’s commanding officer berated him, shouting that it was a foolish waste of time and an outrageous risk. “Your friend is dead,” he added. “And there is nothing you could do.” “No sir, you are wrong,” Jim replied. “You see, I got there just in time. Before he died, his last word’s were, ‘I knew you would come.’”
The Bible is full of verses on friendship. Proverbs 17:17 says, “A friend liveth at all times, a brother is born, for adversity.” IN John 15:13, we hear the words of Jesus, “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” Who are the friends count on? I hope the Lord Jesus Christ is the main one. He will always be there for you!
Dr. David Bouler of Global Faith Ministries, Chattanooga, Tennessee, contributed this column to the Journal Review. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.