His call came at the right time. I was deep in a computer problem and needed a break.
I met him shortly after high school when we started work for the same company. A genuinely good guy and as honest as the day was long, he was the most caring person I had ever known. He had his priorities straight; I didn't, and he didn't mind telling me, "You ain't right." He would always snicker, but he was on target.
After a few years, the company's business went sour, and I went out the door. Mike stayed, but our contact became sporadic. Years interrupted our once daily conversations, and I missed his companionship, encouragement, and wisdom.
Interestingly, every time events made me wish I had him to talk to, he would call or I'd get the urge to visit him. Regardless of his situation, he'd encourage me. And he did it again when I was at my wit's end with a wireless router not communicating with a modem.
As Moses reviews Israel's history and God's commands prior to his death and their entrance into the Promised Land, he warns them about family members or friends who encourage bad behaviour:
Deuteronomy 13:6a,8a – If your very own brother, or your son or daughter, or the wife you love, or your closest friend secretly entices you, saying, "Let us go and worship other gods", do not yield to him or listen to him. (NIV)
Moving around as a preacher's kid and then as a preacher made establishing friendships difficult. For some reason — probably his determination — the one with Mike endured. He's taught me a great deal.
Friends encourage friends even when they may need it themselves. Time passes, but they never forget each other. Calls, e-mails, cards, and texts may not come regularly, but they come — and amazingly, at just the right time. Friends maintain accountability by pushing each other toward healthier behaviour. And just when we think we've reached our rope's end, we may hear, "Hey Marty, this is Mike. Tell me what's going on."
Who's the friend you need to contact?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, help us to be friends who enrich other's lives. Amen.
Listen to this devotional
Listen while you read: "Mine Eyes Have Seen The Glory" (Lyrics)