Friday, September 12, 2014

253/365-2 Discarded


Friendship and all of its intricacies have been on my mind this week.  I don't think that I realized a few days ago when I photographed the Diet Coke can, with the phrase 'Share a Diet Coke with a friend." on it, that I had any idea where my week was going.  Now, posting this photo two days late, it is all making sense.

As one who grew up in a military family and moved a lot, I don't have any "childhood friends."  In a time where there was no email or texting, it was next to impossible as a child to keep up with people  place after place and year after year.  My current friendships go back only as far as my college years, which is now thirty five years.  Yikes!  But, even contact with these people has waxed and waned over time.  It wasn't until I finally succumbed and created a Facebook account that we have re-established and thankfully maintained the deep friendships that we had back in our younger days.  I must admit that I was reluctant to add Facebook to my life, feeling that it would be yet another distraction in my already overly busy world.  Fifteen months later, I have learned that friends are not a distraction; they are a life force.

This week I have viewed friendship from both ends of it's continuum - that where you feel the genuine love and support of your friends during tough times and that where you experience the intense hurt when someone whom you considered a close friend betrays you.  Thankfully, in the latter circumstance I was not the one who was betrayed, but I was honored to share with someone that hurt and be there with a listening ear and compassionate heart as this person shared deep feelings of pain and grief.  It was during our communications that I realized how meaningful it is to earn the trust of another person.  The trust of another human being is nothing to be taken lightly.

I also became even more aware of how blessed I am to have the circle of friends that I have.  To look at us each individually, most would probably wonder how in the world we became the close-knit group that we are.  The only answer that I have to that question is that God brought us together.  I don't mean that to be, or even sound, cliche.  I say it with great respect.  We have been brought together by a series of circumstances, events, and independent relationships that none of us could have ever foreseen.  I am not wasting the time and energy to ask "why,"  My energy is being used to say, "thank-you."  I do know that what sustains our friendship with one another is regularly breaking bread together - spiritual bread as we pray and share the Eucharist with one another on Sunday mornings and physical bread over at least one shared meal a week.  In looking at life this way, that first blessing that most of us learned as wee little humans, 

"God is great.  
God is good. 
Let us be thankful for our food.  
By God's hands we are fed.  
Thank you God for our daily bread."

becomes so much more meaningful and powerful as adults.

This week each of us in this close circle of friends was faced with making an extremely difficult individual decision, one that had to be made by oneself, but in the long run impacted each of us.  We all did that, knowing that there would be support from and for one another regardless of our personal choices.  We talked and prayed our way through this process.  And now that all is said and done, we still have each other; we still have a wonderful and beautiful and blessed friendship.  There really is nothing greater for which to want in life.

So, in case you were wondering, that is the story behind this particular photo.  

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