I arranged to meet with a young woman from OVERFLOW! on Saturday afternoon – there’s so much going on in her life and I wanted to catch up with all her news. I also wanted to support her financially for her upcoming Missions trip to India so it was definitely time to get together. We met in Starbucks and chatted for two hours. The time went quickly. It always does when I am spending time with someone special.
One of our conversations was about how our friendships with women change as we get older. I told her that as a high school teacher, I witnessed countless young women who were convinced that their friends in Grade 12 would remain their friends forever. Within a year of going to different universities, their friendship changed and many of their relationships ended. It’s sad…but it’s life.
I encouraged my younger friend to be open to “newness.” Friendships change because we change.
I went on to share with her that I am still in touch with friends from my high school days and we will always have the past in common. However, life unfolded, opportunities separated, choices took us down different paths, expectations unraveled, time passed and maturity clarified. New friendships have nurtured and challenged different parts of me at different times in my life. I have let go, grabbed onto, taken risks, felt disappointments, reassessed, moved on, fought for, lost track of, gotten hurt from, forgiven, ventured out and continued to intentionally cultivate friendships.
No question – life is richer when we authentically connect with others. Friends quench a deep thirst.
Always pursue God-given friendships. Go and be a blessing to others.
Friendship is one of the greatest gifts a human being can receive. It is a bond beyond common goals, common interest or common histories. It is a bond stronger than sexual union can create, deeper than a shared fate can solidify…Friendship is being with the other in joy and sorrow, even when we can not increase the joy or decrease the sorrow. It is a union of souls that gives nobility and sincerity to love. Friendship makes all of life shine brightly. Henri Nouwen