A Faithful Friend

Sharon and me, enjoying a Christmas lunch together

            Carry each other’s burdens. – Galatians 6:2 (NIV)

            I don’t know what I’d do without my friend Sharon. We met at a Bible study nearly 45 years ago and discovered we had much in common. We were both stay-at-home mothers struggling with more month than money, hard-working husbands, and unfulfilled dreams.

            As our friendship grew, I’d find myself dialing her number whenever I needed someone to talk to, cheer me up or give me advice. We spent hours analyzing life, the world, our children and our men. I could tell her things I couldn’t even tell my husband and know she’d understand.

            No matter how busy she was, no matter what time of the day I called, she took the time to listen, talk and, most important, pray with me. Even when I didn’t ask, I knew I could count on her prayers.

            As our children grew, our lives became more complicated and the calls less frequent. But even though we’re both busy, I know I can call her when I or one of my family is experiencing a crisis.

            On the night before He died, Jesus took Peter, James, and John with Him to the Garden of Gethsemane. 

            “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death,” He told them. “Stay here and keep watch with Me.”

            But the busy day, big meal and evening of fellowship tool their toll. They fell asleep, waking only when Judas returned with a club-carrying, sword-wielding crowd. And then they fled. When Jesus needed them most, they let Him down. Perhaps if they had prayed instead of slept, they would not have deserted Him, leaving Him to suffer and die alone.

            There are times when people ask us to pray for them. Are we like the sleepy trio whose spirit was willing and flesh was weak? Or are we like my friend Sharon, whose faithfulness and prayers make all the difference?

Thank You, Lord, for a friend who prays with and for me when I face my own Gethsemanes. May I be as faithful a friend to others as she is to me. Amen.

Read and reflect on Matthew 26:36–46.

© 2022 Michele Huey. All rights reserved.

On and Off My Rocker

All men’s miseries derive from not being able to sit quiet in a room alone. – Blaise Pascal

The rocking chair described in this post is now downstairs in the family room. This one is now used for my quiet time.

In the corner of my dining room is a gray antique rocker. A thick, green-checkered cushion hides the lawn chair webbing that someone weaved in to replace the original cane seat. Over the rocking chair hangs a brown cane swag lamp with its switch a reach away. On the wall behind it, from the wainscoting up to the ceiling and the full length of the wall, a bookcase constructed of thick, rough timber, darkened with age and covered with several layers of clear finish and a thickening gossamer of dust, is crammed with two of my greatest loves: photos of my family and books.

The rocker sits next to a four-feet-by-eight-feet, triple-pane, casement window looking out on the front yard, with flowering bushes blossoming one right after another: azalea, lilac, mountain laurel, and rose. A wooden, six-sided bird feeder dangles from the branch of the maple tree 20 feet from the window, which reflects the tree and the western sky so well it fools the birds, which often fly into it. Here I watch the snow fly, the storm clouds approach, the leaves change, the sun set, the morning stretch over the field from yonder pasture to my front yard, where I saw two bears racing towards the woods behind the house one summer morning. Where I savor the seasons of the year and sense the passing of the seasons of life, uncertain of how I feel about it.

Surrounding my rocker are several baskets of yarn and projects-in-progress, three sewing baskets, a basket of my quiet time materials—devotional books, two or three Bibles (different versions), prayer lists, and my “basket case,” a wicker basket with 365 slips of paper with Bible verses; I take one a day to keep from going nuts.

There’s a coaster for my coffee, tea, or water; a radio so I can listen to the Pirates’ game while crocheting, a book or two for leisure reading, an old hymnal, a box of tissues, and a small basket of pens, pencils, and sticky notes.

Here is where I head in the morning, cup of caffeine in hand. Where I wait in the lulls of life. Where I find peace for my troubled mind, anxious heart, stubborn will, and battered spirit.

Here is where I talk to God, and where, in the absence of the roar of busyness and the static of the world, I hear His still, quiet voice. Where I weep with worry, pour out my problems, complain about life’s unfairness, deal with discouragement and disappointment. Where, impatient, I demand answers—something, anything, to hang my dwindling hopes on. Where I sing with gratitude when I finally see the answers, which are always so much more than I prayed for.

Here is where I finally “get it.”

This is my quiet time place. My little corner of the world, where I hide from the world to find strength to deal with the world.

Where I meet with El Shaddai, Jehovah Jireh, Adonai, my Abba Father.

So that when I’m off my rocker, I’m not, well, off my rocker.

O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you, in a dry and weary land where there is no water. – Psalm 63:1 (NIV)

 Read and meditate on Psalm 63

From God,Me, & a Cup of Tea: 101 devotional readings to savor during your time with God,

© 2017, Michele Huey. All rights reserved.