I had a bunch of friends over to the house for a friend’s birthday party. We made Brazilian drinks, I made pad thai and they set up a labyrinth with candles and paper bags in the grass. We ate. We drank. We walked the labyrinth. We talked about friendship and pathways, about history and present. We dangled infinitives and even split them. We talked about the moon and about global warming. We discussed sin and music and poetry. We laughed very, very hard and we cried a bit. We told stories. Lots of stories. We celebrated the life of a friend. But we also celebrated our own lives.
Friendship is a great gift of God. I wonder sometimes if it is not the greatest. “ I no longer call you servants. Now I call you friends.”
Friendship takes time and of the more than14 people at the party in the moments of this image, I only new one before the party. Thirteen of them were brand new to me. They were all so wonderful. Each one opened up like unwrapping a Christmas present “oooo—— what’s inside this one!? And this one?!” They were all so beautiful and kind, generous and willing to make and be made into friends.
I worry a bit about our culture. I worry about television and about how easy it is to sit all night long in front of a lit screen and spend hours watching friends on Facebook but never actually making new friends or engaging real ones. It takes so much vulnerability to make new friends. So much effort. And yet without them, how will I ever get to know Jesus?