Text: Vesa Kumpula
Translation: Sirkka-Liisa Leinonen
I was requested to send a videotaped birthday greeting to a mutual friend. The birthday was celebrated within the immediate family, and the video greeting was to be a surprise to this friend of mine.
While planning and recording the video, I began to think more deeply about the significance of friendship, and who I would call my best friends. I concluded that I have many different friends, and they are all important.
The best description of friendship can be found in the Bible. In his farewell speech to his disciples, Jesus said, ”Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” (John 15:13). The Bible also tells us about the friendship between David and Jonathan and between Ruth and her mother-in-law Naomi. Those Bible portions show that friendship is based on love and mutual trust.
The following Bible portions also profoundly reflect the nature of friendship:
” Anyone who withholds kindness from a friend forsakes the fear of the Almighty” (Job 6:14).
” I am a friend to all who fear you, to all who follow your precepts” (Ps. 119:63).
” A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother” (Prov. 18:24).
”Trusting in a treacherous man in time of trouble is like a bad tooth or a foot that slips” (Prov. 25:19).
Here are some of the things I said in my video greeting:
”Heartfelt congratulations to you, dear brother, now that you celebrate your 70th birthday. I am grateful for the many profound discussions we have had over the decades. I especially remember two meetings that took place in the early 1980s. We were… - - Our paths in life have miraculously crossed time and time again, and we have been able to support each other. Thank you for having considered me a friend.”
I sent the video, which lasted for one minute and 41 seconds. I had been requested to make a video lasting for one minute. I said in my message that I had not been able to keep the video so short, but I would be happy to try to shorten it, if necessary. I got this heart-warming response: ”No need to shorten the video. Warm thanks for this video and the memories you shared.”
It is not typical of Finnish people to show their feelings openly. We seldom verbalize whatever we think about another person. It often happens that we can freely express our feelings and thoughts about a person only after they have passed away. Yet we all have memories of situations where someone has come close to us and told us how important we have been to him or her.
I have warm memories of situations where a friend has asked me how I am doing or where I have been after I have been away for a while. Such questions show that they care about me and find me important. Even a simple brush on the shoulder may reflect sincere affection.
Friendships that have lasted for decades are like wonderful presents. Although the friends may not meet very often, they can always continue their discussion and companionship quite naturally where they left off a long time ago. We should cherish such friendships like great treasures. Someone has said that trials and hardships are a test of friendship: only the true friends who really care remain with us.
Suomalaisia on pidetty niin kotimassa kuin ulkomailla rehellisinä ja luotettavina ihmisinä. Onko näin edelleen? Kaupan liitto teetti hiljattain ulkopuolisen selvityksen varkaushävikin suuruudesta vähittäiskaupassa. Samassa yhteydessä kartoitettiin varkaushävikin torjunnan aiheuttamia kustannuksia. Laskelmat tuottivat melkoisia lukemia: varastetun tavaran arvo on vuodessa puoli miljardia euroa. Toiset puoli miljardia euroa kaupoissa kuluu toimenpiteisiin, joilla näpistelyä ja varastamista yritetään estää. Kaupan alan toimijoiden mukaan varkaudet ovat olleet pidemmän aikaa kasvusuunnassa.
Kodin joulu -levyllä soivat ennen kuulemattomin toteutuksin monet perinteiset joululaulut.
Mihin syntien anteeksiantamus perustuu Raamatun mukaan? Kirjoittaja käy läpi Uuden testamentin anteeksiantamusta käsittelevät kohdat, joiden kautta avautuu monipuolinen ja selkeä kuva aiheesta.