This past week I reconnected with an old friend.
In a hospital room.
I haven’t seen her in years. I’ve thought about her. Wondered how she was doing, even called and left a message but didn’t follow through.
I’ve been busy.
I have a family, a business, a blog, a home. I have been battling with my own illness. Then there’s all the kid’s sports activities. I have my jewelry making, which I never have time for, my friends that do respond to my phone calls and emails, church, bible study…you get the idea. I’m busy. My life is full.
When my friend didn’t respond, time slipped by and I just assumed she was busy like I was. She had a successful career, a new marriage, her own kids to deal with, and I figured she didn’t have time for me.
I was wrong.
When I heard she was sick and in the hospital, I rushed to visit her, and discovered that the past several years have been very different for her than what I had imagined. She has been suffering and I never knew.
I can’t get this out of my mind.
I regret the times when she was alone when I could have been there to hold her hand. The times when she was in pain when I could have offered a shoulder to cry on. The prayers I could have prayed on her behalf.
I know what it feels like to be where she has been – lying in bed, in pain, feeling so alone and wondering if anyone remembers you or cares about you. With every day that passes without a phone call or a visit, you become more convinced that you have been forgotten.
I can’t go back in time and redo the past. I can’t live in regret. I’m letting go and moving forward.
It was so sweet visiting my dear friend. She is dealing with her illness with a grace that astounds me. I look forward to reconnecting more and more and pouring back into her life.
I am blessed with friends that fill my life with love, laughter, encouragement and strength. I pray I am able to return a small portion of this back into their lives.
Real wisdom, God’s wisdom, begins with a holy life and is characterized by getting along with others. It is gentle and reasonable, overflowing with mercy and blessings, not hot one day and cold the next, not two-faced. You can develop a healthy, robust community that lives right with God and enjoy its results only if you do the hard work of getting along with each other, treating each other with dignity and honor.
James 3:17-18 (MSG)