I actually wrote this blog first and then thought "I'm gonna go look up some friend quotes." Low and behold the first to catch my eye was Ecclesiastes 3:1. I did not type in anything about seasons, this is how the Lord works people. Here you go...
I could give a thousand quotes on "friends", but none can touch the truth. A friend is a person placed in your life in certain seasons to hold us. Maybe they hold us up, or maybe they just "hold us".
I have more friends than I can count. I have life long friends, new and old friends. Some people I count as friends and have never met them in person (thanks to social networking). I have learned more about friendship and love in the last 3 years than I could in a lifetime. The first thing I noticed is that God moves friends around. He moves them in out of certain seasons in our lives at the most perfect times, we may not even notice it at the time, but He does and I can show you.
I have a friend who is my very best friend and has been for a while now. She has a son who is Jacksons age, and we were close when the boys were very young (a season). She saw us at some of our worst times as a family as she was there when Jackson was diagnosed with Juvenile rheumatoid Arthritis and all the testing and waiting that came with that. Gradually, that season of friendship ended and while we never lost touch, we were just busy with our own lives and just were not as close. I cannot express how Gods hand was all over that first season of our friendship coming to an end. I never really noticed that we were not as close, it just happened, like a gradual drift. I am so thankful that Gods plan worked to separate us at that time. Her son and Jackson were never really "super" close. While that may sound odd, its not and I'll explain why. When Jackson went to heaven, I was lost. I had friends but I could not tolerate seeing them, most of them had boys Jackson's age and I could not stand the sight of them. However, when God moved my very best friend back into this hurricane season, the timing was perfect.
I don't know very many people that would come to you in the eye of a fierce hurricane that was as unpredictable as that season in our lives was. I don't know many, but I know a few. God moved people and dropped them into our lives like healing rain. They came into our lives, weathered the storm and we are still standing because they allowed themselves to be moved when God told them to move.
Three long years later, I continue to make the best friends. Some of them do have kids Jacksons age, but they were not close to Jackson in a social way. Those people never catch me off guard, I know that God has put them into my life now and not then for reasons we will never understand. These friends are some of those gifts we never asked for.
I love to step away from the splattered painting of my life and SEE the gifts God gives me. He sends us life boats in the hurricanes of this life. I'm gonna end this with a joke that I heard from a previous pastor, mostly because it makes me giggle. Here goes:
A horrible hurricane was coming up the coast and all residents were told to evacuate the area for their safety. One man decided he was going to pray and wait out the storm. An evacuation vehicle came to his house and the man told them "its okay, go on without me. My God will save me." so they left. A while later while the water was rising a boat came by to try and talk the man into getting out of there, but he told them " its okay, go on, I'm praying and I know my God will save me." A while later the man is on his roof because the water is so high. A helicopter flies over and lowers a ladder to save the man, but he says "I'm waiting on my God to save me, I know he will." Just then a loud clap of thunder came out of Heaven and the voice of God said "Come on son, I sent a car, a boat and now a helicopter, I am saving you!"
There is a reason that I remember this joke from literally about 20 years ago. God placed that seed of humor in my heart because The Lord knew I would need it. When you pray and ask for God to save you, look around you, He probably is.....