“Now it came about when he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as himself.”(1 Samuel 18:1)
All around me things seem to be changing. This is how life is. One minute someone is a part of your life and the next they are gone. Sometimes their absence is caused by a rift in the relationship. Sometimes it’s caused by death. Sometimes they just move away geographically. Whatever the cause, I am convinced that good friends are hard to find. Faithful friends are few and far between. They are here today and gone tomorrow. The friends and family that mean so much to us are only here for a season. Sometimes that season is a lifetime. But usually it’s much shorter. I am painfully aware of this because my good friend and neighbor is planning to move soon. In three weeks she will go to spend some time with her daughter. She will be gone for six weeks and will most likely return after the holidays only to pack up and move permanently.
I’ve written about my neighbor before. She has been a part of my life for the past seven years. But we have really become close over the last four. She called me one day four years ago at the prompting of the Holy Spirit, I’m sure. My son was in the hospital and very sick. She called just to check on me and had no idea what was going on. When I told her what was happening, her first response was to ask me to pray. She asked me if I believed that Jesus is in the midst of two or more gathered in prayer. At that point, I knew she was sent by God. He knew what I needed and He delivered. We prayed that day and she continued to call each day to see how my son was doing. But honestly, she was checking on me. She knew he would be okay because we had prayed. That’s how she is. Once we give it to the Lord, we just sit back and watch Him work. I guess that comes from a lifetime walking with the Lord.
Yesterday, I spent the day with my friend. We dropped my kids off at school, went shopping, and got her a flu shot. She told me that I’ve been a really great friend to her. And that no matter what she needs, I am always willing to help. It has been my pleasure because I have had grown up in the Lord so much just by listening to her talk and praying with her. She has a faith like no one I’ve ever met. She is more Christ-like than anyone I know. She never has a bad thing to say about anyone. She is so filled with mercy and grace. She could turn the hardest of hearts around. She has been the friend to listen and advise whenever I needed it. And she will be missed.
I’m pretty weepy thinking about her and writing this today. But she’s not leaving for a few more weeks. And so, when we are together, I plan to be happy and make memories. After all, once someone is gone, that’s all you have is memories. We think things will last forever and sometimes we are happy to see them end. But in this case, I am sad. She is unlike any friend I have ever had. She has been forgiving without being asked. She has been caring and never judgmental. She has been there to listen and pray with me. She’s been a true blessing from the Lord. And she will be missed.
There is no deep spiritual lesson here. It’s pretty simple. Spend less time being busy and more time with family and friends. They are only in your life for a season. If they mean anything to you, take the time to make memories. Those will last even after they are long gone.