I have a network of friends that I trust and depend on. Based on my experience with each, I have come to trust them in ways I never imagined. In times of trouble, I have found a helping hand when I did not think anyone was aware. In moments of darkness, someone came with light. When it seemed like I had been abandoned, I found myself surrounded.
There is a catch. As strong as they are, each has a weakness or two. While I have come to depend on them, there are moments when they are absent. Nobody is perfect. Nobody is always there. Everyone is human in her or his own way. In short, there are moments when I desperately need them only to find myself reaching out to nothingness.
As I reflect on a morning filled with possibilities, there are three reminders that cause me to smile with hope.
We are all human. “Even my best friend, the one I always told everything – he ate meals at my house all the time! – has bitten my hand.” (Psalm 41.9) Each, myself included, has failed someone we loved. I have come to appreciate the fact that we are human makes the fact that we are willing to be in relationship, helping each other on our journeys, special.
Being present, reaching out, is what people do for those they care about. It does not always need to real (physically present), although that it an important element. An email, sms, or whatsapp message can be a God-touch. Friends have used these and more to connect with me in ways that changed everything.
Expressing one’s concern, fear, and desire for another creates new opportunities. Saying the words changes the space between us. Each can create or destroy hope.
Sharing the load with others changes our world. Be offering and in receiving help, we change another’s world as well as our own. In my experience, in giving and accepting I am strengthened and more equipped to deal with the challenges ahead.
The actions of friends are gifts.