Thursday, October 15, 2015
I remember a song we used to sing as a round in our girls group at church when I was little:
"Make new friends
but keep the old.
One is silver
And the other is gold."
Round and round the words would go as we sang louder and louder - smiles beaming from little faces. We learn very early in life a good friend, a true kindred spirit, is a priceless treasure - one worth even the sorrows.
Jesus demonstrated the importance of friendship during His time here on earth. When He began His ministry, the allure of miracles and great teaching drew people to Him by the thousands. But He, Himself, was drawn to a small circle of young men with whom He could share not only the wonders, signs and miracles - but His very heart. He invested His life in them and shared His greatest joys and deepest sorrows. He called them His friends; He calls us His friends.
"No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things I heard from My Father I have made known to you."
I am a wealthy woman. Not by the world's standard - but by the only standard that measures the true worth of things. Yesterday I had lunch with five dear friends. We have known each other for years. At one time we met together weekly for Bible Study, but as time passed other responsibilities and life changes made it no longer possible. Now sometimes months go by without our getting together, but when we do it's as if we had seen each other only yesterday. We talked, listened (what a gift to be heard), laughed and shared pictures as the restaurant slowly emptied.
Today I gathered with another group of friends. I haven't known most of them for nearly as long as my other friends, but God has quickly knit our hearts together in that special way He has.
We know each other's stories. We have laughed, cried and prayed together countless times. We marvel at the way God has brought us together - the stories of our lives overlapping in miraculous ways. For a couple of hours every week we open the Word and then we pray. Prayer is the glue that holds us together. Prayer and the knowledge that our hearts are safe within that small circle.
I don't have to wear any of the masks I sometimes put on when I am in unfamiliar settings. With each of these women I know I am loved and accepted for just who I am. No need to try to save face - they know me well and rejoice in my successes and encourage me when I fall short.
Over these two days I have been loved, heard, encouraged and blessed beyond measure. They couldn't have known how much I needed to hear their words of affirmation. My heart is full. Thank you my precious friends.
I pray for each of you, the blessing of friendship.