I moved a lot when I was a kid. It seems like ever few years we were in a new house and often a new city. One of the gifts my parents gave me was an ongoing sense of wonder and thirst for the unknown. There was a telling conversation in the middle of one move which has stayed with me across the years.
“Are you going to miss your friends?”
“We will not lose the friends we have.”
“Yes, but things are going to be different.”
“Yes, things will be different. They will also be bigger than they are today.”
“We will work at keeping the friends we have. We will also have the opportunity to make new friends. Imagine the possibilities!”
With time I came to appreciate how true this was and is. My parents have a friendship network which spans America and many countries across the world. They keep in touch, sharing the high and low moments of life, and nurture each other’s journeys. It is as if they have discovered the secret of living in an extended family. The key lies not in the coming and going. That process is a normal part of life. It is as if they said to each person along the way, “First, I left the Father and arrived in the world; now I leave the world and travel to the Father.” (John 16.28) The words that followed are the ones we often miss.
I will never leave you or forget about you.
I will always carry you in my prayer, hope, and dream.
Your needs and dreams are important. The gift of friendship includes the opportunity to share the burdens along the way. Thanks.
As I approach another transition, I am caught in yesterday’s eddies, the friends who continue to share steps along the way, and the opportunities they present. I value their gifts, especially as they work in harmony with other friends who joined me before this brief rest along the way. Today’s is full of these windows. Don’t ever lose sight of them.
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