Today, I am pondering the blessing of friendship. A good friend is truly one of God’s greatest gifts. A recent visit from two of our oldest friends got me thinking about the beauty of friendship. God created us for community, for connection. Not only are we meant to live in relationship with God, but we are meant to cultivate healthy relationships with one another. When we find a good friend that we can both learn from and lean on, well, that is indeed one of life’s greatest treasures.
A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity.
Proverbs 17:17 – NIV
The table awaits. The coffee is brewing, its reassuring aroma blankets the room. On the counter beside the bag of fresh bagels and savory cream cheese lay four plates, four napkins, four mugs.
The chairs are open, waiting, ready to receive their morning guests. Like characters in a long running play, we take our places, comfortable, familiar. We have sat here before, many times. Yes, countless times.
Four friends gathered around the breakfast table, sipping, munching, chatting. The coffee is poured. The food is passed, but the sharing does not stop.
We share the laughter, the stories, the dreams, the worries. Like a river, the conversation flows. On and on, it goes. It twists and turns, never slowing, never ceasing.
For 37 years, we have taken our places at that table and others like it; In restaurants and hotel lobbies, in kitchens and dining rooms; planning our weddings, later planning our travels together. We added babies in bouncy seats, then toddlers in high chairs. Still, the conversation carried over the squeals of young children playing. Teenagers joined us at the table, then left us for college and the world beyond.
Around the table, we visited with our aging parents, sharing the moments and meals of life. We stood together in the waiting rooms, at the bedsides, and finally, at the funerals.
The years have come and gone. The seasons of life have changed, and still, we gather once more at the table; to share the laughter, to share the sorrows, to share the love.
Friendship, connection, community; this is God’s gracious gift to us. To know and to be known; it’s the blessing of a long standing friendship, the beauty of a shared life.
Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.
Romans 12:10 – NIV
O Gracious God, thank You for the gift of friendship. What a blessing it is to have good friends to laugh with, to cry with, to share the seasons of life. There is such joy in these connections, such support, such comfort. Thank You for this most precious gift. Help us to continue to grow with one another, to treasure the moments gathered around the table.