I have a question for you and you may have to think back a LONG way!
Like a few years back! Or maybe, like me, many eons ago!
Do you happen to remember those sentimental treasures known as yearbooks?
Yes, I had to go WAY back into the reservoirs of my memory bank and wade through some major cobwebs to reach those particular memories!
Having that book of precious memories from the school year placed in your hand ranked right up there with Homecoming, Christmas break, making the honor roll, attending the prom!
One of the very first things we did, after we checked to make sure our picture turned out in a most flattering fashion, was to gather autographs!
Oh, the things we wrote to one another!
"You will be my best friend for ever and ever and ever”
"2 friends + 2 gether = 4 ever"
"I will always remember you!"
"LYLAS!" , which every girl knows means, "Love ya like a sister!"
And if you happened to have a crush on a guy or a girl, you would write something like, "You are my one true love and there will never EVER be anyone else for me!"
It’s comical and yet quite heart-breaking. At the time when we wrote those terms of endearment we truly did mean them.
However, 99.9% of the time we never see those people ever again.
Once we hear our name called, walk across the platform, shake our principal's hand, while he places the diploma in our other hand, turn the tassel on our mortar board and finally hear those glorious words, "Congratulations, you are a graduate!", we have basically said goodbye to those friends we once thought would always be a part of our life.
Yes, there are exceptions!
I happened to meet this guy when I was in high school, and even though he had just graduated, he signed my yearbook with a bunch of mushy gushy stuff, and after thirty-three years of marriage, he’s still telling me that mushy gushy stuff!!
As the seasons of life change, so do friendships.
There are different types of friends and different levels of friendship.
I'm so thankful I have a very special, best friend who has been part of my life for twenty plus years.
We’ve seen the worst of each other!
We've seen the best of each other!
We don't need to talk or see each other every day. It’s just a given that we know we're there for each other no matter what!
I'm also blessed to have a few friends in my life who I refer to as my "adopted daughters!" They ARE young enough to be my daughters, but our friendship transcends any age barriers.
Believe it or not, I have friends I’ve never met in person! These are friends whom I've met right here on this website or through chronic illness support groups on the Internet! I've come to know them in very personal ways, and love each and every one of them.
Friends from church.
Neighbors who are friends.
Friends I’ve known for many years.
Friends I’ve known for just a year or two.
And it goes without saying that my husband is my very best friend!
The friends which I mentioned are amazing.
They are gift givers, encouragers, meal makers, card senders, prayer warriors, comforters.
But I’ve come to understand that my friends, and not even my husband, can meet every need in my life.
And the same goes for you!
My friends can't be with me at 1:00 in the morning when I’m wide awake laying in bed with tears streaming down my face because my head is hurting so badly.
BUT I do have a very special Friend that is with me during those long, painful nights, encouraging me to bring my troubles to Him in exchange for His rest!
"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest."
My friends can’t drop everything in the middle of an afternoon to talk just because I’m lonely.
BUT my very special Friend has all the time in the world for me!
"Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice."
My friends can give me advice and godly counsel when I have a problem which I greatly appreciate.
BUT my very special Friend gives me wisdom, which if I follow, I will never go astray.
"Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths."
My friends call, send cards and text messages, all for the simple purpose of showing me compassion, and I love them for it.
BUT my very special Friend not only shows me compassion, this Friend gives me peace, and it's not just "any old peace", it's a peace that passes all understanding!
"And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus."
My friends can, and I know they do, pray for me, and I'm so very grateful.
BUT my very special Friend is CONSTANTLY interceding to The Father on my behalf!
"It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us."
My friends will listen with an open heart and a desire to understand as I share how I'm doing on my "very physically challenging" days.
BUT my very special Friend invites me to come to Him to find the exact help and total understanding I need.
"Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need."
Over the years my friends have showered me with birthday, Christmas or "just because" gifts.
I have many of those gifts displayed throughout our home, kept in a special "treasure box" or if it was food or candy, it was consumed with great enjoyment!
BUT my awesome Friend has given me the ultimate gift!
The gift which NO amount of money can buy!
The gift which ONLY this Friend can give to me!
The gift of the forgiveness of my sins!
The gift of eternal life!
"For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures."
I Corinthians 15:3-4
"For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved."
Even after knowing Jesus as my Saviour for twenty-seven years, I still stand in TOTAL and COMPLETE AWE that He calls me His friend!
"Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you."
I pray that you find much comfort and peace in this timeless hymn!
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May God Bless You,