It’s that time of year again — kids are groaning, keeners are cheering, parents are counting down the days left of chauffering kids to summer camps, pool parties and back to school shopping.
Yep. Back to school. Again. For almost the second decade.
For the past 4 years I haven’t had to make new friends so I’m a bit rusty and apprehensive about doing that again — and if you’re like me, “not rusty” is not anything to boast about either.
There are so many kinds of people out there with rich and complex backstories that have brought them to cross paths with you in the coming year, and for me, interacting with that is daunting and overwhelming and exhausting.
Social life? No thanks.
I exaggerate — to an extent.
It’s interesting why I find making new friends and new connections so dislikeable though, given that I know I enjoy people’s company (mostly) and that my prospective career depends on finding like minded people to collaborate with.
Not only that, but my making new friends in the past has been incredibly fruitful and the big picture that God has painted through my friendships — that He’s still painting — is truly wonderful and I haven’t been able to appreciate it until 10 years after this story had begun.
Authentic friendship and a longing for deep connection and understanding has marked my youth and childhood. In fact, it plays a large part in my testimony.
Growing up as an only child I was always in search for that best friend, that partner in crime who would be with me forever and never leave me alone.
God in His grace introduced Himself to me. Then in His abundance brought 5 wonderful girls to play with at school. A sisterhood and veritable tween clique.
When I lost my place of acquaintance with the many, I gained the mutual best friendship of one.
When I was desperate for a sister, God gave me one younger and one older.
After many years, when the one drifted away, I grieved.
But little did I know that God was placing me on new paths with people that had always been before me. People that I never thought to connect with because I had my one.
I thought I only had room for one — best means second to none after all… Right?
But as I searched and watched and waited to see who I’d cross paths with next… 1, 2, 3, 4, 5… Soon there were so many whose friendships were precious to me.
And so everything that I sought after and lost was returned to me ten fold — true to His promise.
For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
In Him are all things found. It’s not “if I want blank, I’ll do what God says and He’ll give it to me.”
When we yearn and search for Him, we are already quenched and THEN in addition to that, everything else tends to follow and fall perfectly into place.
Instead it’s “I am enough to satisfy your need.” He is enough. He is more than enough.
In those moments of pain and grief and soul shattering loneliness — I was never alone. Not only was He true to His Word that He would never leave nor forsake me, he showed it by placing me with my closest friends when I needed a community most, when I didn’t know they would become my closest friends — when at first they were little more than strangers and kind acquaintances.
It took me years to see and realize it. I thought I had that “did we just become best friends??” moment with each of them but looking back… It was a long time coming.
So making new friends at a new place, away from the last new friends at the last new place? Bring it on.
When you think your heart is full, or can only hold enough for one best, or only a few, God knows how to open new spaces and fill even those to an overflowing brim.
Best doesn’t always mean one. Best simply means of exceptional quality and you can never have enough of that.
Indeed, the best is yet come.
MM EL EM AZ DL EL — we’ll all be spread across the province and the country soon, but distance has never stopped us before ♥