Make new friends, but keep the old;
Those are silver, these are gold.Joseph Parry
Friendship — A Gift From God
I am convinced that friendship is one of God’s greatest gifts. Friends add so much to our lives — someone to laugh with, someone to cry with, someone safe to vent our frustrations with, someone you know will be there for you no matter what. Sometimes friends come into and go out of our lives depending on the season. Other times they remain steadfast for years and years.
I recently had the opportunity to spend time with an old friend, meet some new friends, and meet in person some friends I had previously connected with online.
Keep The Old
Nearly twenty-five years ago, I met a new friend at my church. Christa and I shared the love of Jesus, scrapbooking, and all things Disney. We taught three-year-olds about missions, spent hours recording our memories, and made frequent trips to Walt Disney World with our kids. Our daughters became close friends.
There was deep sadness and mourning between my daughter and me when a move across the country took our friends away. Oh, we kept in touch as much as possible, when they came home to visit family in Florida, but it was sporadic. Thank goodness for email.
The year my two children graduated from college and graduate school, I started writing this blog. A year later, in 2015, my friend Christa started an online business called Do A New Thing. In simplest terms, she equips busy communicators and leaders with project management and problem-solving skills so they can turn their big ideas into a successful ministry or business. She draws upon her professional skills as a project manager in the engineering field.
I saw Christa’s blog and began following it. Then, I took some of the online classes she offered. I met other women from her classes and even though we had not yet met in person counted them as friends. I think in our earliest classes Christa referred to us as Go-Getter Jesus Girls. By that time, she had moved back to the Southeast, close enough for me to visit and get one-on-one help with my blog.
Here’s the thing, it may be months or years between physical visits, but Christa and I always pick up right where we left off. She hosted the retreat I recently attended — I met in person a couple of ladies I had gotten to know through Christa’s online classes and they in turn met other women they had met online.
Make New Friends
Though the pandemic in 2020 and 2021 was tragic for many people, some positive things emerged. While Zoom meetings may be considered annoying by some, it is a chance to connect with people all over the country if not the world.
I have connected with a writing group whose members have given me the accountability I need to almost complete a book. I have connected with writers of a certain age for direction and encouragement. I’m even part of a creative group where we learn art techniques and work on projects together.
Being in the empty nest has shifted and changed some friendships. It seems like when you have children at home and in school, your friendships are with other parents. Or if you are part of a particular group and your involvement changes, the time you spend with those friends may change. It’s even possible to have family members as close friends.
The Best Friend Ever
But, if all of these friendships faded away, one would still be left. Friendship with Jesus. He promises to always be with us, to never forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). Friends may come and go but Jesus remains forever (Matthew 28:20). Even if it doesn’t feel like it, it’s true. Is he your friend? I hope so.
I love the words of this old hymn we used to sing in the small church I attended growing up:
“What a friend we have in Jesus
all our sins and griefs to bear
What a privilege to carry
everything to God in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful
who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness
Take it to the Lord in Prayer.”Joseph Scriven
2 thoughts on “The Value of Old Friends, New Friends and the Best Friend Ever”
I can really relate to this! I am so grateful He is always there for us!
LikeLiked by 1 person