Isn't there something so deep and so special about friends who knew us at one time in our lives and then return to our lives years later? To me it's like family......those people who really knew me deeply years ago make it so easy to "catch up".
You know, the Lord brought Chris' brother, Patrick, to live with Him last March, 2010. This trip to San Diego was scheduled on purpose to give Chris and I time to be alone and away from our "normal life" during this one year anniversary of Patrick's moving to heaven. In watching Chris mourn over this past year I've seen the deep longing for Patrick, one of the people who TRULY has known Chris in every phase and age of his life. Sometimes he just really wants someone to call and talk to who goes way back in his life......there's just something special about an old friend like that......who knew and loved the old Chris and loves and respects the new Chris of today.
In my view God gave Chris a wonderful gift the week we spent in San Diego. He gave Chris the gift of an old friend.....someone who knew him in his crazy days and yet wants to know him now in his current days. He needed a relationship with a history, a past, and the Lord knew this and provided. God chose to reunite Chris and his friend Brandon - a fraternity brother from the years before his accident, a person who was there the night of Chris' accident, the one who called 911. A friend who visited him in the hospital, a friend who had drifted out of his life. Our time with Brandon in San Diego was so refreshing to both of our souls in so many ways. I am so thankful that Brandon contacted Chris the first day that we arrived.
We all make our own choices and move our separate ways in life. But what a gift to have different people to share our lives with - the good times, the easy times, the intense times, the sad times, the peaceful times, the painful times, the scary times.
We just need each other'; or at least I do. I really believe there are such deep caverns in each of our hearts and souls that can only be filled with relational love, brotherly love, sisterly love......people who take care of us when we need it and who we take care of when they need it......people who hold our hands or give a hug at exactly the right time. I am so thankful that God knows these needs that we have and meets them. He used Brandon to meet this need in Chris and the need inside me to see my husband be loved by a friend, a true friend.
There are people in our lives who will never be replaced. Patrick will never be replaced in Chris' heart. That portion of his heart is and will always be reserved for Patrick. However God is merciful and gracious and willing to bring people into our lives to encourage us exactly when we need it. Thank you Brandon for spending this week with both of us.
Oh Lord I thank you for the thrill of new adventures, new schools, new jobs, and new
friendships. But I also thank you for knowing exactly when we need the old and the familiar, the people who knew us once upon a time........