It has been a sad week. A new friend, one who has been a mentor to me on a Church project, is gone. While I’m still in shock that she is no longer here, I am so thankful that I had an opportunity to know her and love her. At her funeral, I sat among friends who have known her their entire lives, and next to women who have only known her as long as I have. All of us felt the same sharp pain that comes when you lose someone. It reminded me of a verse on a bookmark that a friend gave me once. I posted it here, because I want to remember that all friends matter and are important to us. The ones that go way back, and the brand new ones too. I loved Connie so much. I’m sure, not as much as those friends who have shared life’s sweet intimacies that girlfriends share as they raise their children together. But, I will miss her just the same. Bless you, sweet Connie. Thank you God, for bringing Connie into my life. What a blessing she was to all who called her friend.
When I was little, I used to believe in the concept of one best friend, and then I started to become a woman, and I found out that if you allow your heart to open up, God would show you the best in many friends. One friend’s best is needed when you are going through things with your children. Another friend’s best is needed when you’re going through things with your mom. Another when you want to shop, share, heal, hurt, joke, or just be.
One friend will say, “let’s pray together” another “let’s cry together” another “let’s fight together” another “let’s walk away together.” One friend will meet your spiritual need, another your shoe fetish, another your love for movies, another will be with you in your season of confusion, another will be your clarifier, another the wind beneath your wings. But whatever their asignment in your life, on whatever the occasion, on whatever the day, or wherever you need them to meet you with their gym shoes on and hair pulled back or to hold you back from making a complete fool of yourself…those are your friends.
It may all be wrapped up in one woman, but for many it’s wrapped up in several…one from 7th grade, several from high school, several from the college years, a couple from old jobs, several from church, on some days your mother, on some days its the one with the fresh perspective, or the one who didn’t know all your baggage, or the one who would just listen without judging…those are good best friends.
I thank my girlfriends, those who honor intimacy, those who hold trust, and those who hold me up when life is just too heavy. The special bond we share is unique. Thanks for the words we’ve shared…the prayers we’ve sent up…the laughs, the tears, the phone calls, the e-mails, the shopping, the movies, the lunches, the dinners, the talking, talking, talking and the listening, listening, listening…So whether you’ve been there 20 minutes or 47 years, I love you.
Thank you, Connie Barnett, for touching my life.