A cord of three strands is not easily broken. - Ecclesiastes 4:12
Eighteen years ago, I married the woman, who has become my best friend. She listens to me moan and groan. She lets me crab and cry. She watches me grow up and give up childish ways. She encourages me to dream and dance. She's not perfect and neither am I. Somehow, our differences have become more a source of laughter than frustration. Somehow, our differences are not as divisive than before. There's a beautiful passage in Ecclesiastes about friendship. I've quoted v12 above, but here's the fuller passage.
"Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor. If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken." - Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
Every day, I wake up and say prayers of gratitude for the gift of friendship. I give thanks for my wife, family, church, for many of you. I am grateful for people, who I trust, who I can talk to, laugh with, fight with, grow old with. I am grateful for friends, who know me and love me anyway. None of us are perfect. All of us are flawed. The good news - the Bible tells us about the "third strand" in relationships. This is God's love. Divine love is like a "secret sauce" that makes any relationship better. It's the promise that whenever love is shared - in even the most subtle way - God is near and present with us. Friends, I remind us that a Stay-At-Home order is not a Stay-Apart order. Yes, we need to be socially distant, but we do not have to be relationally disconnected. So, let's thank God for this new day and find ways to share God's love. Call and connect with family and friends. Encourage and bless neighbors and strangers. Offer kindness to those who drive you crazy. And (through it all) give thanks for the gift of friendship.