There have been long gaps in the relationship I have with a childhood friend. I find it amazing to rediscover how comfortable I am being with him. On this trip I met his older brother. I also had the opportunity to introduce his older brother to my younger brother. The outcome was a wonderful dialogue that I am confident will never end! The sibling conversations crossed and wove in a pattern that made it seem like we had know each other for the large majority of our lives.
I know that we will not always be together. I know that life will take us on very different paths. For now, there are two brothers from the Naga Hills walking with two brothers living somewhere a long ways away. We walk, share stories from our past, wonder about the present and the future, and travel together. I wish we could do this more often. These are people I want to know more about! They have stories from their lives that would enrich mine in unique ways. For now the answer is patience. We will walk for a time. I will listen and be. Nothing need be rushed as time will manage itself and our presence with each other.
As I reflect on the days to come, I know that I will be less full because of their absence. I understand the emotion of others “as they watched, he [Jesus] was taken up and disappeared in a cloud. They stood there, staring into the empty sky.” (Acts 1.9) They knew, I know, life will be different in the steps and days to come. I also know that my life is richer for the time that I have spent with these two men and my brother.
The gift of this moment and others need not end with our parting. I can take their approach to life and apply it to my own. I can use their strength to take on the life as it will come. I can use their wisdom as a guide for the problems of today.
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