Celebrate Friendship Day

Friendship with my first BFF lasted a year. We were eleven years old when, like a scalpel, her words sliced through our bond and severed our friendship. She turned to me and said, “I can’t be your friend anymore. I’m friends with Mary now.”

Just like that. In the middle of an elementary school hallway, walking to class. She peeled off and weaved through the crowd, hailing Mary to wait up. As other fifth and sixth graders jostled past me, I strained to grasp what just happened. My friend set me adrift.

Alone.

best friendsUntil a few months later. In that same hallway. Another girl, Sherry, reached out to me. She sat by me at lunch where we laughed at each other’s jokes. Together, we moaned about PE and giggled over our boyfriend crushes. We shared dreams about the future and the nightmare of embarrassing moments bound to happen while stuck somewhere between childhood innocence and womanhood.

When my family moved three states away during the summer before my 14th birthday, Sherry threw me a surprise farewell party. We corresponded through high school, but eventually lost contact during college as life took us down different roads. Nevertheless, for that crucial season when I  needed to belong, Sherry shaped my picture of friendship.

A friend is one who walks in when others walk out.
~Walter Winchell

Today, the first Sunday in August, is Friendship Day. So, I celebrate all the friends who walked into my life. New ones still forming who greet me with a hug. Seasoned ones, who listen while I talk through my joys and tears. Friends like the one who knitted me a frilly boa just because she imagined me wearing one while I wrote my blogs. Or the friend who lives across the country and still handwrites letters despite the pain of arthritis. Letters that always close with, “I treasure our friendship.”

I celebrate these precious gifts. Who do you celebrate today?

Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone? A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken. (Ecclesiastes 4:9–1, NLT)

©2013 Gloria Ashby. Feel free to forward this devotion in its entirety, including this copyright line. Leave comments, ask questions, read past devotions, or subscribe to receive these devotions daily in your e-mail.

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About Gloria Ashby

I'm a writer, speaker and teacher. I live with my husband in the DFW area, and close to our daughter and her family.
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4 Responses to Celebrate Friendship Day

  1. Danie Marie says:

    I so identify with your post, Gloria. I lost a dear friendship in Jr. High. She chose to hang out with a new girl on her block. It broke my heart, and in my hurt, I made a cruel comment in regards to the other girl. I hated that I had succumbed to the pain, and in high school, wanted to ask her forgiveness, but didn’t have her in any of my classes, and I never saw her on campus. Until, the end of our senior year.

    She was sitting on the quad, and I walked up and oppologized. She didn’t even remember my ugly comment, but said she forgave me a long time ago. That was it, until about two years ago, where we reconnected on Facebook. We’ve also spoken on the phone. I’m so thankful the Lord brought us back together. God is good!

    Love you friend!
    Danie

  2. Your story is so universal, Gloria.
    I celebrate a dear friend who died in a car crash years upon years ago. She was the friend who took me to church with her and talked about God in our lives. We were in junior high. I’ve never forgotten her. She will be one of the first, I’ll get to hug in heaven.

    Gloria, you were also a friend of us all at last year’s Christian Communicators Conference. Your early experience makes you an out reaching friend. Your kindheartedness was and is showing.

    Friendliness on!

    • Gloria Ashby says:

      Carolyn, Our friends are often the face of Christ present in our lives, as your dear friend demonstrates. I celebrate and treasure my warrior sister friends made at Christian Communicators Conference.

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