It all started when my husband and I sensed God’s call to move away from where we were living, to a new city and a new church. The excitement, expectation, and allure of something new overshadowed the fear of the unknown. We eagerly looked forward to what God had in store for us as a family. When there were moments of doubt, we would rehearse Mark 10:29–30 to each other: “Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life.” These words from Jesus helped to remind us of the promises of God to those who were faithful to his call.
What About Friends?
Then one day, in the midst of the excitement of selling our home, packing boxes, and looking for a new home, it hit me: I can’t pack my girlfriends into a box and move them with me. I would be lying if I said I didn’t have second thoughts at this point. These were women who watched my children, women who would sit at the park with me for hours as our children ran and played together, women who drank coffee and played Scrabble with me. These women were my friends! Did the promises found in Mark 10 apply to friends too? After all, I am a woman and I long for friendship. Did God care about the longing in my heart for close female companionship?
I can honestly say that yes, God did and does care about my need for female companionship, but those friends didn’t come along right away. There was a long, lonely season after we moved. My husband traveled frequently, women at our new church were busy, and I questioned whether I would ever have dear friends again. I remember asking God if there might be even one woman who would want to have a cup of coffee together once in a while. The answer seemed to be, “Not yet.”
Oh the waiting was so hard — and yet, so worth it.
When the Call Came
It did feel like I waited forever. Thankfully, I had a dear friend from our previous home that, in spite of the distance, checked in with me. She was a lifeline, an ever present reminder that my friends did not have to be in the same place. To this day, we are still friends, upholding one another in prayer, rejoicing and weeping together, even drinking an occasional cup of coffee together plus getting that game of Scrabble played. That helped, but certainly didn’t feel like a long-term answer to my prayers.