"A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity." Proverbs 17: 17
I've been thinking about this for the past few minutes because it's been on my mind, but it's something I really should think about all the time...
How INCREDIBLY lucky am I to live the life that I live? I mean, scratch all the superficial stuff like a good house and water to drink and food to eat (gag) and money and belongings which SO contribute to it. But ignore those for a second. I am the most BLESSED girl alive. I have been given such an amazing life. I have the best friends in the world. I can't even explain it to you. I have friends that drive down sketchy roads at 10pm at night with me, friends that deal with my alternate way of life, friends that love me more than their own body and PROVE it, friends that come to my house to watch movies they don't even want to see, friends that check up on me when I'm feeling terrible even when I'm the worst person to be talking to at that moment, friends who make me feel beautiful when I'm absolutely hideous, friends who pray for me consistently (which I know saves my life in so many ways), friends who reflect Jesus in nearly everything they do, friends who want to stay with me no matter how much baggage I bring to the table, friends who talk to me on the phone late at night, friends who protect me from evil (even when I don't see the evil), friends who make cookies/cakes just to make others happy, friends who consistently sacrifice things in their life to see me and other loved ones smile, friends who make me feel like I'm worth something when I feel like the scum of the earth, friends who put up with my INCREDIBLY annoying quirks, friends who laugh at and semi-encourage my sadistic sense of humor, friends who hold me when I'm tired/down/alone, friends who make me remember why I'm so optimistic everyday, friends who strengthen my spirit, friends who make me realize all the things I'm missing in life when I don't even realize something's missing, friends who see me for who I am, and not what I say.
And those are only the positive things! My friends also show me when I'm in the wrong, my friends confront me in love when the truly see an issue that needs to be dealt with, my friends give me a firm hand when I need it, my friends tell me when I'm not being myself, my friends tell me when I need to be more Christ-like, my friends tell me what I need to hear even when it's the LAST thing I want to hear, my friends help me see the lost causes when my heart is too immersed to see it, my friends protect me from my horribly inept self, my friends see the stupid things I do in life and rebuke me for them, my friends point out the sin in my life, my friends tell me flat out what they disagree with in me and motivate me to change it, my friends tell me when I'm not living up to my potential, my friends show me when something is getting the better of me.
Those only scratch the surface of the wonderful things the people I love have done in my life. I have been given this amazing opportunity to know such beautiful, wonderful, caring people who have changed my life so drastically. My entire outlook on life is different because of them. Without the love of my friends, how could I be so optimistic in this life? Without their love, hence Christ's love, how would I ever be able to wear a smile? How would I ever be able to face even one minute of the day? But I CAN do those things because I am not alone. I'm not alone in anyway. And sometimes I feel like I am, and in my heart at times I may be, but at the end of all things, I have a family of people surrounding who share in my pain and happiness. People who are hurt when I am hurt and carry me through every trial I'm too weak to endure by myself. I am such a weird person. I have so many quirks and strange habits that no one should have to put up with, but they do. They see them and LOVE me for them, not because they have to or because they're guilted into it (at least I hope not), but because they WANT to. They see Jesus inside of me and constantly push me to be Him, everyday of the week. No matter how far away from His likeness I've fallen.
My heart is overflowing with so many emotions right now. I'm so in awe of God and everything He's entrusted to me. So many hearts sit in the palm of my hand. And I've been given the task of taking care of them. And in turn, those hearts I hold are taking care of my heart, too. I'm surrounded by so much love and compassion sometimes I seriously can not fathom it. I can't understand how I'm deserving of such a beautiful life. But what I do know: Jesus traded His righteousness for my dirty, sinfulness which opened up endless possibilities for my life. And now, I'm deserving of anything. Now, I'm free to achieve anything. Now, nothing can hold me back. Not pain or hurt or self-doubt or health issues or being a hypochondriac or worthlessness or fear or nervousness or dismay. Nothing's holding me back in this new life I've been given. It's like everyday I'm a brand new creation, waiting to start everyday all over again. With the same beautiful people by my side, facing every new trial and obstacle right along with me.
I know I'm not describing this well. But... I love you all. So much I can't even begin to describe it. I love you so much it pains me to know you hurt or you're scared or you're alone. I know when we get to heaven (FINALLY) I'll finally be able to describe to you exactly how much you affected my life for the better, but for now all I can say is that you DIRECTLY affect everything I do. You make me who I am and you provide me with a constant safety net. You are the consistency in my life and without you, I would be nothing. Not one single thing.
Thank you, Jesus.
"Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses." Proverbs 27: 6