I am shy. I am introverted too. I am embarrassed to say that it takes me a long time to warm up to people because of these two traits. However, if an extroverted person is interacting with me, I come out of my shell quickly and I make fast friends with people. I base friendship on trust, laughter, shared memories, and especially deep conversations regarding uncomfortable topics shared without judgment. One-on-one time is precious time to me. After years of trust, laughter, shared memories, and discussions regarding uncomfortable topics, I considered a certain person one of my best friends. During a discussion after I did something randomly unexpected for them, I said I did it because they are my best friend.
The look on their face told me otherwise.
It was a split second, but I caught it all on the tape I replay in my mind. I saw the furled brow appear as well as the questioning eye squint. Their lips remained pursed together. It was a split second, but that split second was packed with a punch.
I am not short of friends, but something triggered me to think about this person lately. I miss what used to be before I spilled the beans. Maybe the relationship was not really as strong as I had conjured up in my mind. I live and I learn. Some people stay in our lives, and others don’t. They weren’t my only best friend as there can be more than one based on the shared qualities of the relationship. I accepted the fact that they had other best friends as we cannot be everything to everyone we meet. But I was never on their list of best friends. Perhaps they hit their limit and had no room for me.
Situations like this make me recoil and go back to the shy and introverted person I am deep down. “Back to the drawing board” I tell myself. At the proverbial drawing board, I take inventory of who my friends really are. Who sticks with me through thick and thin? Who can I call on any time of the day and they answer me? Who does not judge me and loves me even though they know my sin?
I can count my absolute best friends on one hand. And the ultimate best friend is Jesus and he is counted on my heart. All I learned about being a friend, I learned from Jesus. He sticks with me through thick and thin, He answers me whenever I call, He does not judge me and loves me even though I sin.
Thank you, God, for your son Jesus and that I can truly call Him my best friend, forever. Thank you also for my earthly friends. May I continue to be there for them through thick and thin, answer whenever they call and never judge them though they sin.
Galatians 5:22-23New International Version (NIV)
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
“Get up early and get there first, you’ll have the whole day ahead of you” echoes my dad’s voice of wisdom in my head.
Jumping out of bed this morning, I prepped two rooms in my house to keep my three cats out of the way of the guy doing some work in our basement. I proceeded to drive my car to the repair shop and got there before the “Open” sign was turned on in the window. I left it there to have them look at my brakes and rotate my tires. Living close enough to the repair shop, I took advantage of the beautiful sunny morning of my day off from work, and walked home. It felt good not to be one of the cars zooming by heading to work today.
I stopped into the coffee shop in my neighborhood and found out they do not carry dairy-free French Vanilla flavored creamer, so I made a stop to the corner grocer and picked out some decaf coffee beans, ground them, and grabbed a container of my dairy-free creamer. I brewed my own pot of coffee and sipped it while sharing my scrambled eggs with my cat, Mojo.
As I was walking around my house, tinkering around actually, I noticed a sqeak in my shoe. I paused and made that same step in my shoe and heard that squeak. I smiled as memories flooded my mind.
My dad never wore jeans; he said he didn’t like the feel of them. So he always wore black polyester pants, belted. When he worked around the house, tinkering around the house actually, he would wear the black pants that had paint drips on them along with a white T-shirt with slightly yellowed armpits despite my mom’s attempts to whiten them with her secret laundry powers. He also wore these beat up, old black slippers.
When I was very young, I thought the kitchen floor itself was squeaky because it sqeaked when dad walked through. The floor didn’t squeak when I walked the same path and I concluded it was because I was very thin and didn’t carry enough weight.
I remember when I was a few years older, I needed to get something from outside and I couldn’t find my shoes, but dad’s beat up, old black slippers were there at the ready. I slipped in them and headed out the door. Then I heard the familiar kitchen floor squeak, but I was out in the driveway. I would step a certain way and the slipper would squeak. I made a little song of it with my feet. It was fun.
So this morning, I heeded my dad’s advice and got a lot accomplished before 8:00am. And I squeaked my shoe in the kitchen and of course made a little song out of it. It was fun.
Happy early Father’s Day, dad. I love you and miss you dearly.
Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— “so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”
I was 19 years old. I got out of work after 5pm and the bank had already closed for the day. I needed a little money out of my meager savings account to fill up my gas tank, as well as have a little entertainment money for the evening. My only option for money withdrawal was from the ATM machine.
I drove to the bank and walked through the first set of doors and turned right to the ATM machine. I dug out my ATM card from my wallet and slid it into the card reader. I punched in my PIN number and answered the standard questions:
Savings or Checking: Savings
Withdraw or Deposit: Withdraw
$10.00, $20.00, $50.00, $100: $20.00
The ATM machine was processing my request and when the little door opened to give me my money, to my surprise was a little gift left by someone before me. I was standing in front of an unmarked envelope with a wad of cash inside. Someone either didn’t know how to use the ATM machine, or it was a trap to catch a thief.
I stood there frozen in thought. Do I grab this envelope and my $20.00 and walk away? Do I leave the envelope where it is and take my $20.00 and walk away? It’s after hours, how would I let someone at the bank know there is improperly placed money in the ATM machine?
I was 19 years old. It was a hard decision; my savings balance was low. “Who didn’t know how to use an ATM machine?” I said under my breath.
I stood there frozen in thought, my heart beating faster, and little beads of sweat formed on my brow. I remembered the camera inside the ATM machine was watching me. I am sure if authorities reviewed the tape, they would see me standing there for at least 6 minutes for a transaction that took no more than 2 minutes.
I was 19 years old; my morals kicked in and kept me from being tempted.
Exodus 20:15 “You shall not steal.”