In just a few short weeks I will celebrate the end of my forty-ninth, and beginning of my fiftieth year of life. I am grateful to be here. I’m grateful that along the way I’ve learned some wisdom, and have learned to listen to my heart (perhaps the prompting of the Holy Spirit?) when I know my friends are hurting in some way. Often this prompting leads to some word of encouragement, or support, sometimes a hug, an email, a text. I don’t always understand why these promptings happen I find it’s important to listen to them and reach out to my friends.
This week I’m at a trade show, the first part of this with a group of people who I work with, and they have become close friends. The thought of Not having them in my life make my heart ache visibly down my face. As I’ve come to this age having these women (and a couple of others) has such deep meaning, and value. I can not thank God enough for allowing me to have these friends.
One of these women has had one hell of a rough year, and it’s still taking a toll on her. This friend is very much like a sister to me, adding to the ones I have, and yet so very different. She has helped me grow, and become a better writer, helping me to ask better questions, and use words concisely. (Okay, okay it doesn’t always happen.) The details of this last year are not important, and it’s not my story to tell. So the other day, at this trade show, as we walked the hall and talked, I took her hand in mine and walked with her. We all know how comforting it is to have someone express care and concern in a touch, a hug. Jesus touched people who were ill, downtrodden, hurting – physically or spiritually. I listened to her need, and held her hand. That’s it.
As we walked, I heard someone make a comment that didn’t sit well with me both in words, and in the tone of her voice, essentially expressing her disapproval of the hand holding. While this comment had the opportunity to make me angry because she has no clue what was happening in that moment, it didn’t, it made me sad. I thought if she only knew. But she doesn’t. And yet she’s assuming something she shouldn’t, expressing it loud enough for me to here.
While I chose to ignore the comment at the time, while I’ve been annoyed about it on/off since then, there’s nothing I can do now. In that moment I chose to protect my friend, to give her comfort, and I know that holding her hand in that moment, when she needed me, is the thing I’ll hold on to.
May the Lord give you His Peace,