He said to them in reply, “My mother and my brothers
are those who hear the word of God and act on it.”
~ Luke 8:21
Family is God’s early way of showing us His presence in our lives. It is in my family that I learned about true, unconditional love; experienced pure joy with no strings attached; cried my heart out knowing I will not be laughed at nor left alone; dreamed my dreams with alacrity and abandon believing the sky is the limit. Today, whenever and wherever I experience unconditional live, pure joy, unalloyed forgiveness and acceptance, inspiring dreams and visions; I know that God is there. I am home. I am with family.
Friends are family we choose in life. Often, life life itself, people come into our lives rather serendipitously. Friends are pure gifts. They bring presents of love, joy, forgiveness and acceptance, dreams and memories. Friends are probably God masquerading as persons we can see and touch in daily life.
I again came across this reflections from six years ago that I wrote about my friend, Ping whose birthday it is today:
Today is the birthday of a dear friend of many, many years. Our first encounter was not particularly pleasant for him. For a sensitive person, I can often be very callous and I hurt people without my realizing it with my sarcastic and acerbic remarks. I one time cut him down with a withering comment, out of nowhere and unprovoked. He kept his quiet. Instead, he took it with equanimity and let it pass. He was forgiving and left the door open for us to still become friends later on. Over the years, I have experienced his love and concern in many ways, often unexpected and ‘unprovoked’. In gratitude and humility, I pray for him today and my other friends who have shown me what real love and concern are, by sharing with me their time, talents and treasures and, most specially, their presence in my life.
“Lord, thank you for family. Thank you for friends and friendships.”