Her shirt caught my attention. It was a simple shirt, but printed on its front was a familiar logo. I recognized it from a ladies conference I had recently attended.At that time in my life, I seldom initiated conversation with strangers, especially when those strangers were in the middle of a conversation with someone else. So, you can imagine my surprise when I spoke aloud the words taking shape in my mind.
I was at that conference, too.
She turned toward me. We chatted for a moment about our favorite parts of the conference, then smiled and said our goodbyes. Little did we know what a wonderful friendship would blossom from that one brief interaction.
It sneaks up on us, introducing us to those lovely people destined to become key players in the story of our lives. We can’t foresee it. Sometimes we can’t even imagine it. But, it’s there. Brewing beneath the surface. Waiting to show itself in the most ordinary, yet unexpected ways.
Sharing a seat on a school bus in fifth grade. Camped out beneath a piano-turned-reading-station as a shy 10 year old girl. Sitting as a young teen in the back pew of a Baptist church. Chasing toddlers through the park as a young mom. Working together. Teaching together. Serving together.
Living out the ordinary, simple ways of life. Together.
Whether it’s in a carpool line, a church building, a break room, or even a family reunion, we all search for the familiar. For the friendly faces of those whose presence make us feel at home, though we are not. Who wait expectantly for us and are thrilled when we arrive. Who tarry with us, even when the delay is unbearable. Who bring laughter into the stickiest of situations. Who bravely choose to shoulder the burdens of life along with us. Those are the ones we long to share life with.
Oh, what a blessing it is to have such friends! What a blessing it is to be that friend.
Friendship is truly one of God’s greatest gifts. Those of us who’ve been blessed with true friends know this to be true. Those of us longing for such a friend hold out hope that he or she is coming soon.
So today, let’s celebrate the beautiful gift of friendship.
Let’s be that friend who initiates the conversation. The one who shows up and sticks around. The one who refuses to allow the busyness of life to crowd out the joy of friendship.
And if blessed with friends like this, let’s be the one who speaks up and tells them so.
What will you do to express love and gratitude to your friends today?
Please share your ideas in the comments section and then share this post with those special people you call friends.