The last two weeks have brought some interesting twists into my life . . . through Facebook, of all things! Over the last year, I have loved reconnecting with old friends from high school. It has been fun to see what they are like as adults--in ways you can't really discover at a high school reunion. I have been struck by how they have changed, and how they are still the same. I've laughed at grown-up outlooks on life that we never thought we'd have when we were carefree teenagers. And I've realized that many of the quarrels and conflicts and things that divided us were really not worth all the angst they brought on us.
In the last couple of weeks I've begun brainstorming and searching for old friends from the churches I've attended over the many years. It has been very rewarding to find one of the first students I ever had in Sunday School--she was first grade the last time I saw her. Now she's 26, and a very beautiful young woman! When I was 22, she was my 6-year-old best friend (and I took a lot of teasing from my husband for that!). I've found friends, former pastors, kids I knew . . . and it has brought back a flood of wonderful memories. Best of all, it has given me some insight into what life is like when lived in community with believers. Until I started corresponding with some of these people, I didn't even realize how very much my heart had missed them, or how much I still love them because of the relationships we formed long ago! One of my status comments was about how big a party heaven will be because of all the reunions going on there! I truly cannot wait!!!
I've also rediscovered how totally worthwhile pouring your life into others is! I have run into people online that I know shaped who I am and what I believe, and I'm SO grateful for the things they taught me, for the way they loved me, and for the grace they showed this headstrong young woman! I've glimpsed how my willingness to teach Sunday School, work with teens, play with babies, and hang out with families has shaped a little of who these people have become. Most of all, because of our mutual love of the Savior, I've seen that twenty years of joys, pain, triumphs, disappointments, mundane routine, and pushing through the next thing have not marred the sense of kinship I feel toward these brothers and sisters in Christ. Living in the family of God is a wonderful place to be, and I'm in awe of the protection and provision God has afforded me in His body.