Tim is a friend. We've led worship, been to youth camp and youth retreats, played softball, ridden bikes, and worked on a CD together. Whenever I come up with some crazy new idea, Tim is the first one that I call to help design a logo or image to help capture the essence of the project. Finally, Tim has his own website, where you too can meet him and allow his photographer's eye to add beauty to your life.
Nash is a friend. For a little while, Nash was shy. He regularly didn't attend youth events, and only came to the quiet service with his family. Then Nash got involved in four-square. Now, everyone knows that Nash is left-handed, likes to wear slippers (now TOMS), and has a dictionary-esque vocabulary. Nash has been a wonderful co-author, writing and editing and processing Jesus is for Losers. Nash, too, finally has his own blog, where you can read his random musings that will make you read slowly and think about this great gift of life. First post is coming soon.
I wish Lars was a friend. Last night, Jamie and I watched Lars and the Real Girl. We talked through the whole movie. It is a wonderful story of the healing power of a community of friends who show patience, love, and acceptance, and the transformation that comes as a result. Make sure you watch it with a friend.
Finally, I made a new friend today. My stupid car (I do not have a smart car) is back in the shop, and there wasn't a mechanic free to give me a ride to work. Normally, I just walk. But today it was raining, and I melt in the rain. So I jogged over to Starbucks and made a friend. I actually introduced myself as a pastor (something I never do--I showed her my card as proof) and told her my sob story. I then offered to purchase her coffee for a ride to my church. She laughed, and graciously gave me a ride, telling me all about her Irish family.
Friends are those people that we most often take for granted. Friends are those people that we most often overlook, forgetting our "pleases" and our "thank yous." Friends are one of God's greatest gifts.
So take 5 minutes today, and call a friend. Or better yet, buy a card (with an actual envelope and an actual stamp) and write a note to someone who's made a difference in your life.