Last weekend I joined friends for a special birthday adventure. Phyllis had accomplished turning 60 and we decided a trip commemorating this event was in order! Our excursion involved a night at a Bed & Breakfast, tour of a Virginia winery and a tour of Monticello(historic home of Thomas Jefferson).
The fun began even before we left the parking lot at the start of our trip. As we piled our overnight bags and then ourselves into our friend’s 8 passenger SUV there was an air of excitement. It felt just like being a teenager heading off to an overnight camp of sorts…except we were clutching our coffee cups instead of soda cans and less than nibble in climbing to the back seat.
It did not take long before the story telling began as we recalled the hilarious antics of our kids in their youth. It seemed like only yesterday when the boys emptied our pantries and hair dye and cake mix boxes were found in the trash following a girl’s sleep over. Over the miles and well into the evening, we had precious time to get caught up with each other, hear about families and learn what was new in each other’s lives.
While we were joyfully creating sweet new memories while on this adventure…it also reminded me of why I love these women.
These are the women who shared more than just stories of funny, happy times in their lives. These women were quick to share their struggles as well. When I was in a valley these were the women who boldly admitted they had been there too and helped me see my way out of it. When I faltered as a parent and bent under the weight of despair, these were the women who encouraged me. They shared their own battles so that I could see the hand of God in their lives and hold faithfully to His promises.
Following our tour of Thomas Jefferson’s home, Monticello, I discovered this quote by him,
“…friendship is precious not only in shade, but in the sunshine of life, and thanks to a benevolent arrangement the greater part of life is sunshine.”
What a privilege it is to share one’s life with others….our falling down AND our getting up, our sorrows AND our comforts, our despair AND our hope…that in all of life, both shade and sunshine, we may see the hand of God and glorify Him in our friendships.
“…and our hope for you is firmly grounded, knowing that as you are sharers of our suffering, so also are you sharers of our comfort.”
2 Corinthians 1:7