I am a wealthy woman. The other day I enjoyed a rare and wonderful afternoon with a couple of my friends. It was rare because it’s not often we find a day in which we are all available. But more so, it was rare because we had each cleared the entire afternoon without discussing it beforehand. We enjoyed a delicious lunch overlooking Lake Coeur d’ Alene (thanks again Sandy), and then took a leisurely stroll along the boardwalk admiring the boats. We walked back to the resort, and not wanting our respite to end, relaxed for awhile on some cozy seats inside. In comfortable companionship our afternoon took a step away from busy schedules to quietly savor the gift of friendship.
On my way home I made a stop at the grocery store to avoid a trip into town the next day. So when I got home, having spent over three hours of my day on the road, it was nearly 7:30 pm. Usually when I spend a day in town, I am exhausted by the time I get home. But this day, as I drove the hour home from Spokane, I realized how utterly relaxed I felt. It was as if I had spent the entire day at a spa. The revitalizing pleasure of simply enjoying friendships is indeed profound.
When I make those drives into Spokane and back, my mind wanders through events and issues. I often ponder whatever I am currently experiencing in my journey with The Lord. That day I was struck with a realization. Perhaps for the first time I realized that when it comes to friends, I hit the mother lode.
Recently two friends from high school came to visit me. We’re not talking a short drive across town. We’re talking an hour and a half…one way. Not only did they drive all that way, but they brought lunch! We had a glorious time talking about kids, grandkids, old times, old friends, and, well, getting old. Yes, I know I used that word three times, but what a blessing to have friends who have known me for…many years (no, I’m not saying how many, trust me it’s been a bunch), and they will still spend three hours on the road to visit with me, and bring lunch!
A couple of weeks ago, I spent four days in Portland with another group of friends. Of the three with whom I traveled and roomed, two have been friends for many years, one since our children were babes, the other since Billy Graham came to Spokane over thirty years ago. What a joy to share that time with them. The third, bless her heart, did the driving and is fast becoming a treasured friend also. In Portland I got to see several new friends whom I have known for about a year, but never met face to face. When God is your ‘thing in common’ it creates an instant bond that is eternal. I know many of those friendships will become even more rich and precious as we go forward.
And do you know what? I haven’t even begun to exhaust my list of friends. I am talking about the ‘you can call them in the middle of the night if you need them,’ kind of friends. You know who you are, I started a list, but was afraid I would leave someone out. So just trust me, I know who you are too. Some of you are family as well as friends, how awesome is that? Why am I saying all of this? Because I want to go on record as saying, “I am a wealthy woman and I know it.” These are people with whom I will be spending eternity. Yahoo! We are going to have so much fun in Heaven!
I will admit, there have been times when I felt isolated and alone. But I realize now what a lie from the enemy that was. I may live a distance from most of my friends, and although I am trying to change that, the real distance has been in my head. So now I am asking the Lord to expose more areas where I have allowed my own perspective to cloud the lens through which I view life. Where else have I been blind to His blessings? Where have I been so introspective and self-involved that I have missed His enormous generosity? I live under the light of His smile, and He wants me to enjoy His favor. I intend to embrace with open arms this life I am living in Him, and I don’t plan to miss anything along the way.
Yep, it bears repeating. I am a wealthy woman.
“Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.” John 15:13. Jesus Christ: the best friend ever.Hidden Treasures Hidden treasures, acts of love I overlook each day God’s grace a pearl so priceless not one of us could pay Have I grown so accustomed to His matchless faithfulness That I fail to recognize it? The answer oft is yes A friend when days are troubled, knowing what I need My plea, though left unspoken, is what she seems to heed A child’s golden laughter, causing me to pause And smile in pure enjoyment, simply ‘just because’ My days are filled with God things, hidden in plain sight While I with blinders snugly fit, look neither left nor right Oh Lord, remove the blinders and cause my eyes to see Your hand in daily day events, wrapped in simplicity Help me hear your still small voice and whisper in reply Through eyes once blind I see you Lord, I nearly passed You by
© Sharon E. Coleman 2015