King Solomon tells us in Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, NASB, There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven—
(2) A time to give birth and a time to die;
A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted.
(3) A time to kill and a time to heal;
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
(4) A time to weep and a time to laugh;
A time to mourn and a time to dance.
(5) A time to throw stones and a time to gather stones;
A time to embrace and a time to shun embracing.
(6) A time to search and a time to give up as lost;
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
(7) A time to tear apart and a time to sew together;
A time to be silent and a time to speak.
(8) A time to love and a time to hate;
A time for war and a time for peace.
This verse has recently pierced my heart especially
3b and 6b, because I realize I have to take it at face value. Months have come and gone, my husband is and has been very ill, and I have not heard from my best friend. He has had a stroke and is now facing the possibility of kidney dialysis, and she knows this. I stopped dead in my tracks when I realized, for the past eighteen months, the only time I’ve heard from her is when I called her.
As I ponder the last year and a half, I remember we had so much in common. Our husbands are like “two peas in a pod.” We had the same mother-in-law problems, but hers has passed on. We have daughter-in-laws that could pass as twin sisters even though I’m positive they don’t even know each other much less be related. We laughed. We cried. We spent hours together, shopping, discussing the Bible, and sharing pictures of our grandchildren. We traded recipes, had our families over for dinner, and exchanged Christmas presents...always Indian artifacts. We knew each other’s hurts and joys almost before they happened. She nominated my husband for a national educator award. So what happened?
I dialed her number shaking as I dialed. She knew it was me. She has a caller I. D.
“Hello,” her voice was tired.
“Good morning. How are you doing today?” My questions continued, and she answered each one. She had been sick.
Finally she said, “I recently received a phone call asking for a character reference for you. I told them we were acquaintances that talked on the phone ever month or so.”
Acquaintances! I thought: did I imagine all those years, all those times we shared, all the comfort I thought we gave each other? When I hung up the phone and remembered the last year and a half, that’s where our relationship went. When I called her, we talked. Now I have to let her go. I need her but our season is over. I still ponder the reason why as I deleted her email address between tears.
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