Constant Through the Trial and the Change

You may or may not have noticed that I’ve taken a hiatus from blogging consistently the past few weeks. Unlike the title of today’s post, my writing has been less than constant through the trial and the change. And let me tell you, there have been a lot of trials and changes around here lately.

At the top of the “change” list has been the marriage of a son, which occurred this past weekend.

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And as far as the trials go, well, let’s just say that most of them are not worth mentioning. Amongst so many life adjustments, it’s good to have a constant. Something unalterable, consistent, steadfast.

That one thing that remains steady when life is fluctuating and shifting on so many levels.

In the midst of all the roiling emotions that accompany the wedding of a child, I was blessed to be reminded of one of my life’s “constants.” When I looked up to greet the smiling face of a friend who has known and loved me even longer than my own husband has, you can imagine my sense of relief and joy at her presence. Shelley has been my BFF since high school and has stood beside me in cheerleading uniform, bridesmaid dress, and bridal gown.

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Last Saturday she stood beside me once more as I donned the garb of mother-of-the-groom. I can honestly say that seeing her at my son’s wedding was one of the highlights of my day and was a blessed reminder of just how fortunate I am to have a “forever friend.” A rare constant who has remained throughout the changing seasons of life.

From the days of sharing secrets of teenage crushes to the moments of finding our “Mr. Rights,” through the struggles of motherhood and the mixed emotions of “letting go” of our all-too-rapidly-growing adult children, Shelley has been there. Sometimes in the background, sometimes as a lifeline on the other end of a phone line, and sometimes standing right beside me – close enough to reach out and hug.

But always there. Always constant in her love for me.

It’s not like we see each other often or talk on the phone weekly. Our lives and callings have led us states apart, which is all the more reason why Shelley’s presence this past weekend was such a blessing to me. Not only was she there to rejoice with me, she was there covering me in prayer. And that’s the kind of friend I need. The kind of friend who views every occasion as a time to lift me before the throne of grace. The kind of friend who impacts my life with words spoken to the One who gifted us with our friendship and has held us together through the years.

No matter the distance between us, I am confident that Shelley always has my back – even when it’s from her knees.

Contrary to the polite comments posted by long-ago friends on our most recent photo together, we really have changed – more than a bit. And although most of the changes have taken place inwardly, I see the maturing of my own face reflected in the slight “laugh lines” (NOT wrinkles, mind you) around the eyes of my friend, the strands of graying hair covered over by a “quick fix” of L’oreal, and the aging of skin that once glowed with the youthfulness of teenagers.

But my friend remains beautiful still.

In fact, I’m certain that if we live to be 85 or 90, I will look at Shelley and still see her as one of the most beautiful people on planet earth. Because I’m confident she will still be glowing with love. And I daresay, she will still be bending her knees to cover me with her prayers, even if those aged knees can only bow in her spirit.

Because that’s the kind of friend she is.

And the kind of friend I want to be.

The kind of friend who has your back… from bended knee.

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