This past week, the lights went out in my daughter’s room, and it has not been an easy fix. She has no problem with that, though, because it means she doesn’t have to sleep in her own room, which she is absolutely thrilled about.
While her brothers are carted off to their rooms at bedtime, she proudly announces that her lights don’t work, so she gets to sleep with Mommy. Last night was day #4, and you should have seen her smile at bedtime.
Kids love snuggling next to their parents in bed, but a good night’s rest for the parent is few and far between when you wake up multiple times with an arm across your face or a leg jabbing you in the ribs. You’re teetering close to the edge of the bed and shivering because your little one’s stolen the blanket. Oh, the joys of parenting!
OK, so I admit…there is a part of me that doesn’t mind it too much. One of these days, she will be on her own and will find another BFF. But, for today, I’ll take it.
After the Babylonian empire destroyed Jerusalem, they took Israelites captive to their country. Daniel was one of them (Daniel 1). I can’t imagine being forced away to a foreign land and being expected to learn new “language and literature” as Daniel was.
It’s one thing be part of a foreign exchange program for a year or two, but to be dragged away to do it? That’s disheartening.
But God did not leave Daniel alone. He was with three other men who also came from the royal family…men who shared the same God and values that he did.
What a relief to go through a challenging time with a friend. It doesn’t change the situation, but it eases the pain a little.
When our family went through a health crisis a few months ago, I had to take time off work, and we had to change our daily routine. It was a difficult time… but we were not alone. Friends visited, meals were delivered, family stayed. That gave us peace. There’s just something about going through a valley when you have a have a hand to hold onto. You don’t feel like you will be swallowed up by the mountain.
There are many people who go through life without community. And it’s possible to do that, but you don’t live an abundant life that’s promised in God’s Word (John 10:10). Jesus chose a group of 12 disciples to do life on earth with him. They were a group of imperfect people with different interests (fishermen, tax collector, physician). Although they missed a few opportunities to comfort him in his dark moments, they were still called his friends.
Is there someone God has called you to befriend? She may not have similar interests as you or may not be a believer, but she may be going through a valley and may need to hold your hand. Be available to them, offer your help in whatever way appropriate, and you may even want to ask her, “How can I pray for you?”
When God walked this earth in the form of Jesus Christ, he desired relationship. Let me challenge you to be the hands of Christ and gain a boldness to make a friend by being one.
-Elizabeth Thomas (Betsy)
*photo credit: Unsplash, Joshua Sazon