As I've gotten older and settled more into my family life, I've got to be honest, I've gotten quite comfortable here. I am blessed to stay at home, and while the kids are in school and Hunter's at work, I have the day all to myself, and I know exactly what I'm going to do each day: Monday's catch-up day from the weekend and laundry, Tuesday's bathroom duty, Wednesday I dust furniture (maybe!), and Thursday's are floors. I like knowing what each day will bring and the fact that I'm in charge of how I spend my time, and since our moving to a new place, I have to say, the solitude has been quite refreshing. For the first few months, I liked knowing that when I went to the store I wouldn't run into anyone I knew because I didn't know anyone! But isn't great how God teaches us by sometimes giving us the very thing we've wanted?
I have said on more than one occasion that every now and then I'd like to just be on this deserted island with just my family and my dog and no one else, no phones, no computers, no radios, absolutely no devices that could possibly be used for communication. Well...it's been called its own country before, but Texas is certainly no island, however, I believe God has used it as such in my season of life right now. He gave me what I wanted. Solitude. And it was nice...for a while. After we'd been here a couple of months, I'd find myself every so often wanting to pick up the phone and call someone, but there was only one problem. I didn't know who to call. I wasn't close enough with anyone just yet to pick up the phone and chat. I'd find myself in the grocery aisle looking for a familiar face, but I never found one. I wanted to invite someone over for dinner or be invited over. I wanted a friend. And it was here in this place that God began to teach me of how I'd been treating friendship. See, like I said before, I like knowing what my day holds and being the one to say what I do with my time. I don't like regularly scheduled things that feel like a chore before they've even begun, and I like to talk on the phone, but only when I'm the one who's called, and even then, it'll only be for a minute or two. I have a friend who knows me so well, it wasn't long into our friendship that we were on the phone with each other one day, when after a few minutes of conversation, she said, "Ok. I'll let you go. I can hear your 'I'm-ready-to-get-off-the-phone' voice!" I didn't even realize I had one of those, but she was right! I do! It wasn't long before I began to hear what the Lord was telling me: I wanted friends, BUT only when it was convenient for me.
Let's face it. We're busy people, and if we're not careful, we'll begin treating friends like a luxury instead of the necessity that Scripture says they are. In Ecclesiastes chapter 4, Solomon writes, "Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!" The Lord had to bring me through a season of solitude for me to see the ways in which I am selfish with my time. I won't lie. It's hard for me. And I still don't think it's a sin to not like talking on the phone! :-) But being a friend sometimes means letting others dictate our time. Even so, it's a worthwhile investment!
I am thrilled to say now after six months in our new home, God has richly blessed me with a wonderful group of ladies I am grateful to call friends, and every now and then, I may even talk to some of them on the phone!
How far will you go this week for the friends that God has placed in your path?
|Our buds, Jon & Rachel Isbell|