Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Prologue to a funeral

Its interesting how God uses seemingly irrelevant circumstances to accelerate growth within ourselves. It was brought to my attention (by God) that my mere selfishness can have an effect-even on the unknowing...the innocent. Paul Crowe, my high school friend and fellow graduate was hit and killed by a drunk driver while helping deliver "Toys for Tots" this past week. He was a newlywed. Angelina-another friend and fellow classmate-is now a 22-year old widow. She's not the first. A year ago, my friend Rachel married her dying fiance on his deathbed. A few days later, she became a 20-year old widow. Unreal.

Sure, I can sit and question God. I can marvel at the unfortunate events and pray for answers, but what does that do for them?? Proverbs 18:24 says "A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother." Sure, I may call myself a friend, but what have I done? When was the last time I called one of them just to "catch up?" When was the last time I showed up at a doorstep just to say "HI!"?? When have I ever appeared in their "after high school" lives? I haven't!!! God calls us to love one another, but why do I find this loving thing so hard? I find time to check my email daily, call my closest friends, and watch useless television shows after work-but what about my peers? How would they respond if I only showed up at the most difficult time in their lives and gave them a quick hug (you know, the awkward forced one that you never really remember why it happened...) and made some brief comment that I was praying for them? I don't think thats a very Christlike thing. I'm a so-called "Child of God" and I only come to the rescue when they've hit the bottom? What gives them the right to trust and lean on me? How can I show them Jesus if I only show up when they only want to be near those who've loved them all along (assuming they don't know Jesus is just that...)?? Its a simple answer: I CAN'T!

So what now? Yes, I'll go to the funeral. Yes, I'll make sure Angelina knows that I'm praying for her and that I'm here if she needs me. But, I'll also keep praying, keep loving, keep showing up in her life. Not only that, but I'll start that with others. Who knows how relationships can affect someone eternally! I want to be in Heaven with these people-so why can't I step off my pedastal and show them the light to find the way home...

"Do not forsake your friend and the friend of your father, and do not go to your brother's house when disaster strikes you. Better a neighbor nearby than a brother far away." Proverbs 27:10


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