“24 And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, 25 not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.”
“15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.”
“4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.”
This morning I was cleaning out that drawer we have where we stuff things when we don’t know what else to do with them or are too lazy to take the time to find a better home for them. I know I am not the only person who has a drawer (several) like that, am I? Anyway, most of what I found in there went straight to the trash bin, having stayed in the drawer long enough to outlive its urgency or even my remembrance of why it went in the drawer as opposed to the trash bin in the first place.
Near the bottom of the drawer, however, I came across a stack of cards that caused me to pause, take them up, sit down, and read and remember, with a few (just a few) tears as well. These were cards that had been sent after the last miscarriage, that fourth and final one. Upstairs in the very bottom of my night stand, there are three bound stacks of cards that I’ve kept, but somehow, with this last one, because we were in the midst of getting ready to move and I was so tired, so very tired, this little stack didn’t make it to my little safe place and had ended up here in the junk drawer, waiting the time I’d find them again and remember.
And what that made me think today is this: How thankful I am for the caring friends who took the time to send a card or a note, even when they really didn’t know what to say. How thankful I am for the Body of Christ, who encourage each other, who weep with each other when we weep and rejoice with each other when we rejoice. How thankful I am that our gracious God puts the lonely in families - and isn’t that what the Body of Christ is for those who believe and trust in Jesus - a family? How thankful I am for each card and the scripture included, which encouraged me at a difficult time and stirred me up to the good work of trusting my Savior, even when I was hurting so. Because what each of those cards and the messages written in them had in common was that each of those friends encouraged me in the Lord - pointing always to Jesus, the Savior of my soul.
Even our realtor here, who is also a sister in Christ, sent a note of encouragement after Drew had to call and tell her that we no longer needed that extra bedroom in the house, was there anyway to go back to the drawing board? So, what I’m thinking about today as I remember my caring friends is how good it is to send a card, say a prayer, make a phone call or even a visit when someone comes to mind. Those friends, sisters in Christ, who sent cards, or called on the phone even when they had no words but just called to let me know they cared, helped in that way to encourage and helped me (and Drew) to bear a heavy burden. So, I’m hoping that my providential stumbling across those examples of sweet encouragement will help me to remember next time I think about sending a card or offering encouragement to not merely think about it, but to do it. Because the encouragement offered goes beyond just that moment, but lasts for years, as my little tucked away bundles of cards can attest.