I had to make a business trip. A friend heard about it, realized that there was a friend of his that I did not know, and volunteered to introduce us. I look back with amazement. Every experience where one friend takes care of another is a magical one. Things happen across multiple dimensions. In singular moment a new friendship is born, another growths, and one rediscovers the hope of community.
The idea that friends watch your back, cover your butt, and extend your community is not new. Centuries ago, a wisdom father sent a note to a community; “If Timothy shows up, take good care of him. Make him feel completely at home among you. He works so hard for the Master, just as I do. Don’t let anyone disparage him.” (1 Corinthians 16.10) While the note that I was coming was worded slightly differently, the impact was the same.
I walked into a new friendship and knew I already belonged. In the process I realized a trust foundation was in place and working between another friend and myself. The steps that followed changed.
Trust was granted in advance of anything that either party did to earn it.
Hearing with an open mind was the starting point. Anything was and is possible.
Dialogue was integral to the conversation. Questions, stories, and explanations all mixed together in a glorious concoction that was funny, interesting, and thirst creating.
I know that the initial experience is not an indicator of every step that will follow. There will be times where either or both sides wonder about the other. We will struggle to balance the priorities and demands of our lives. I also know that trust filled friendship will transcend the barriers and obstacles that come along.
Friendship is something that one commits to, a decision born of heart and mind. It can be difficult. It can also be rewarding in ways that either party could not imagine. I know there is potential. I feel hope. In storms as well as the best days, I will treasure this gift, friendship.