Sorrow and suffering bring you to a place where you can know the deep things in life. Deeper faith, deeper understanding, deeper sensitivity. These are the gifts that come along with them. Sometimes, they drive you to a deep need to reach out and open up, or, shut up the world from your life and just settle in your shell to avoid being hurt. I have been in and out of both, but reaching out to share has always had the upper hand.
(Image from Google)
After a usual day alone with my writing interspersed with suffering, my husband finally came home in the afternoon. Often, we just have snacks together and talk about trivial things (sometimes I just prefer to clam up and not tell how hard my day has been). But this time, I had the overwhelming urge to tell him about the book I’ve started to write. I told him that he’s the only soul I’ve shared what the book is all about, then proceeded to show eagerly the first few chapters. He was nodding but distracted. Before I was finished, he stopped me (not rudely) and said, “Can we just cut it short because I want to take a nap.” I have known this forever. That he’s someone who is rarely interested with books, or reading, or writing, or analyzing (he only reads news and sometimes the Bible). Why I keep forgetting this fact in our life is entirely my fault. Although I know all this, I still get hurt and I still long to have someone to talk to about the things that interest me.
But I have to quietly accept the fact that husbands can’t be everything. Mine does sacrificial love every single day: massages my atrophied legs late at night when I can’t sleep; assists me in bathing and washing my hair; runs errands – the things I want him to check out or buy in stores, etc. etc. But he can’t be all I want him to be. That wouldn’t be fair. Husbands are not all-in-one. That’s why there are women friends. And I’m in want of one.
I had a friend once who knew all my flaws but still didn’t think of deserting me. She was the one who would volunteer to walk with me the whole length of Mega Mall for the nth time because I finally decided to buy the blouse, or the dress, or the pair of shoes. She would do her best to keep her drooping eyes open while I talked into the night. But I made sacrifices for her, too. I would endure a migraine attack that was killing me while we ate a Thai dinner which was her favorite. She was the one who would go to such lengths just to buy me roasted chestnuts when out of season (but Chinatown had it and she intuitively knew) because it was what I was pining for while I was pregnant with Hannah. But before I gave birth, she had left for Canada, a better opportunity for her. We haven’t seen each other for 8 years now.
But though I’m hungering for a friend I can touch and laugh and cry with, I know I have one who is always there and ready to listen. He can be as close as the next heartbeat. He eases my pains; soothes my sorrows; and makes me soar in the inspiration He brings. My friend is Lord and King and He loves me forever. I’m glad I found a friend in Jesus.
Can we find a friend so faithful,
Who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness;
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
From the song What a Friend We Have in Jesus
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