I have rewritten this post a couple of times because I have a lot to say, but am not quite sure how to say it.
So here goes...
I think it's very important to stay in touch with people. God places people in your life for a reason, and if you live everyday keeping your blinders on focusing on just your own life...you will miss out on a lot of the blessings God has in store for you.
"And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another —and all the more as you see the Day approaching." ~ Hebrews 10:24-25
I've always looked at this verse and only thought about it in the context of "don't stop going to church." But I now think it means a lot more than just that. Encourage each other-- call your friend for no specific reason. Hug your dear ones tight!! Write a letter/email to someone who you know is going through a hard season. And, most importantly, remember to pray for these people who God has placed in your life and who you love so much.
Especially after coming home from Argentina, I have realized how important it is to stay in touch with dear ones. I want to talk with my host family in Argentina every day because I so want to be a part of their lives. It makes me sad to remember how I was in their lives everyday and now they are doing things that I don't even know about because I'm here and they're...there.
You know the song "Blessed be the name of the Lord"? It says "You give and take away...You give and take away...my heart will choose to say...Lord, Blessed be Your Name!" I have to try to remember to thank God for allowing me those two weeks with them, instead of sulking over the time I now have without them.
I had a small group leader in fifth and sixth grade who was the biggest encouragement to me. We talked about everything...and continued to be friends even after she was my small group leader. We would get together on Sundays and talk before church, and we emailed back and forth all the time.
She and her husband recently moved to Ireland as missionaries, (please pray for them!) and today I was chatting with her on Skype (even though it was midnight over there!). It was such a blessing to be able to talk to her face to face!! I've really missed her.
Even though I'm not in Ireland with her, or in Argentina with my host family, I know that God still placed these friends in my life...and they will continue to be my friends, no matter how far away we live from each other. Even if I never talk to any of them again (thanks to technology I am fairly certain that will never happen, praise the Lord!) I know I can still do what Hebrews 10:24-25 commands. I can still pray for these dear ones. Isn't prayer the biggest blessing? Whenever I pray for my dear ones in Argentina I feel like I'm right there with them...because prayer does make a difference, readers. A bigger difference than standing right next to them and giving them a hug ever will.
But, oh, I am so grateful for my dear ones in AZ who are right next door for me to squeeze them....because this girl does love a good hug! :)
So. I hope my ramblings encouraged you to keep praying for your friends, no matter how often you see them. Keep spurring one another toward good deeds, and loving one another always. Much love,