For the Joy of Human Love
An evening was spent together with a couple friends. It was a most delightful time, I greatly enjoyed them, I felt greatly enjoyed. Their dining room became a space- to wonder together about the things we think, to think together about the things we wonder, to wander together about in our wonderings, and to wonder together at our wanderings(some together and some apart).
This particular friendship is older than many others, It has had its ups and downs but it has grown. It started with common roots, and as we discovered similar interests it continued to grow. This isn't uncommon of course. Most normal human beings begin life surrounded those of similar roots and may or may not not end up calling those people good friends after 30 years. Several months ago another of my very good friends recently wished me a happy anniversary.
I am not married, nor are anniversaries exclusive to marriage. He was simply inviting a celebration of the fact that we had been friends for ten years. We had some shared background that was not visible to the average bystander, but our paths crossed and for various reasons, nearly 6 years after that intersection, I moved to his area. Though in different worlds, we were able to cultivate and build upon the discoveries of that first interaction is ways that have enriched both of our lives. We can choose friends to a certain extent, but we do have a limited number of people that we have to choose from due to proximity, place in history and shared experiences. In his book The Four Loves C.S. Lewis says,
“In friendship...we think we have chosen our peers. In reality a few years' difference in the dates of our births, a few more miles between certain houses, the choice of one university instead of another...the accident of a topic being raised or not raised at a first meeting—any of these chances might have kept us apart. But, for a Christian, there are, strictly speaking no chances. A secret master of ceremonies has been at work. Christ, who said to the disciples, “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you,” can truly say to every group of Christian friends, “Ye have not chosen one another but I have chosen you for one another.” The friendship is not a reward for our discriminating and good taste in finding one another out. It is the instrument by which God reveals to each of us the beauties of others.”
Who has God brought near to you?