This past weekend, I spoke at a retreat for homeschool moms. I drove the four hours to South Georgia by myself. That was a fun time of listening to worship music and of praying and just talking to my little lonesome self. This is the second year that I have spoken for this group of ladies. When I arrived, I felt like I was at home. Not my real home. Not my hometown. Just home. I got hugs and greetings and it made me feel special even though I was just one of them. They celebrated my birthday with a cake and gifts and let me ramble on and on about my homeschooling (and life) journey without falling asleep or leaving. So it was a pretty cool weekend all around.
Last night, I went to the first meeting of the year for my homeschool group. Since I’m no longer homeschooling, normally I wouldn’t have been there. But I am a founding member of the group and I am the first one to have graduated all of her children (albeit there were only two so that may not be such an accomplishment to some of you) so the group wanted me to remain as the first alumni member. When I walked in the door, I was instantly greeted and hugged and made to feel as just as much a part of the group as I have always been.
I got to thinking about church friends on the way home. Do church friends make you feel this way? Like even though you’re not going there anymore you’re still just as welcome at a small gathering of the ladies? Or if you’re new, do you feel just as welcomed as the regulars? If not, they should. Friends are friends and if they don’t treat you like an old friend when they see you, then they’re not friends.
Have you ever felt like Job in Job 19:19? It says: “All my intimate friends detest me; those I love have turned against me.” I hope not.
I used to be guilty of paying more attention to my new friends than my old. Now I am more often too guilty of paying more attention to my old friends than my new. I hope and pray that as time continues to pass by my way that I will make new friends, keep the old ones, and treat them all like they are my best friends!
Proverbs 18:24: One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
Proverbs 12:26a: The righteous choose their friends carefully.
1 Samuel 20:42: Jonathan said to David, “Go in peace, for we have sworn friendship with each other in the name of the LORD, saying, ‘The LORD is witness between you and me, and between your descendants and my descendants forever.’” Then David left, and Jonathan went back to the town.