Monday, May 1, 2017

An open apology to my friends

We sat in the airport cafe, attempting to make the last hour linger a little longer. She has been my best friend for so long. She has loved me, laughed and cried with me. We have done bible studies together, and prayed together. I have ushered her kids into my home and hugged her as her husband scooted her off to the hospital to have her precious first boy. 

“I feel like we didn't get much time together this visit.” 
“It never does, does it?” 
“No, it never does.” 

I knew the time was sneaking up on me, and soon I would have to go through security. She would snap the car seat of her new baby in the car that I just met this trip, on her 45 minute ride home. I would board a plane, and begin a travel to the other side of the world that I called home. This last trip I came home a married women. Her the mom to another baby, I had yet to meet before this visit. 

I messaged her between international flights, and she responded with “It always hits me in waves when you go. I realize your gone, and its hard.” 

She has told me this before. But this time, for some reason it hit me on a different level. 

I realized that I come in like a whirlwind, and suddenly like that I am gone. For five years, I whirlwind in with trauma, tears, and desperately needing an ear to listen, a shoulder to cry on. I start sleeping again, I start to function again, and just like that, I am gone again. I come in suddenly, overwhelmed at Wal-Mart, fumbling with contrasting cultures, demanding schedules, and just like that, I am back on a flight over the Ocean. 

I have wanted to ask all those who have remained my friend their forgiveness. I realized how hard it must be to be my friend! And yet I have realized, how faithful they have been to me.  Friends who have welcomed me into their home as a homeless drug addicted teen. Friends who sat next to my hospital bed after countless suicide OD attempts, on a respirator, in a coma. Friends in whom have welcomed me into their family, into their home, into their prayers, into their lives. Friends who never laughed at the idea of me going halfway across the world. Who prayed like crazy when I boarded that first flight, scared to pieces. Friends who always saw Gods ability, never my reality. I am not capable, not able, and surely not qualified. It is all the Lord, because I am a broken stumbling vessel. 

No one ever told me, how on the mission field, you will meet so many amazing people from all over the world. You will make friends quick and form deep quick relationships. You will wonder if you have one more goodbye left in you, as another friend whirlwinds back or into their next place. But also I am thankful, as I have began to realize and trust and cling to the fact that, my residency is in heaven, on a level I would have never grasped before. 

To my friends. Thank you and I am so deeply sorry. Someday, we will all be at his feet, at the banquet table, with no more goodbye’s or even the superficial 1-2 year long “See ya soon”. Someday….. we wont have to feel the miles, and distance. And I cannot tell you how I appreciate you, and how amazing of friends you are! 

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