Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 (NLT)

Friendship is born

There is nothing quite like a friend who really understands. When life is tough, words are difficult to get out and emotions even harder. I’d much rather be the strong one than the one who falls apart in a puddle of tears. But life can be hard — very hard.

There have been times in my life when I wondered why God thought it was necessary for me to know intimately about a particular subject—divorce, depression, vision issues, sleep issues. But when confronted with someone in a puddle of tears over the very same thing, I can reach out with a hug of understanding and a few words of empathy that lets them know that I really do get it.

This week has been one of those weeks as I listened to the fears of a friend headed into a difficult cataract surgery and another is in a very rough patch in her marriage. I offered encouragement and insight from my own journey that, if nothing else, let them know I made it through. Often, that is our biggest fear.

There are days when I ask God to heal my eyes — much like the Apostle Paul and his thorn in the flesh— but I know that the perfect vision I once enjoyed is gone. Yet, that dependance on the One who sheds light on my path and warms my heart enables me to “see” others in a new way and come alongside and offer help.

But we have a question to answer. Do we choose to be better or bitter when we face the difficulties in our lives? Our Father offers some friendly advice, “Find a friend because with help, you will succeed.”