Friendships

Toward the end of first grade, I learned my friend Debbie was moving away. I came home from school and cried.

Rhodema and I in the Kiamichi Mountains

Rhodema and me in the Kiamichi Mountains

My mom explained that throughout life, people would come and go. Friends would move away, new ones would come. And she was right.

Although I never saw Debbie again, I still have friends from first grade. Several of us went through all twelve years of school together.

I made new friends. One of them was Rhodema. She and I met at church a few years back.

She was a writer. I wanted to be a writer.

She wrote for our women’s magazine. I dreamed of writing.

She was editor for the women’s ministry blog. I was afraid to share anything I had written.

But one Sunday, while serving together as greeters, I got up the nerve to mention that I had written a couple of items.

She asked me to send her something. I did.

A few days later, I received an email saying that she loved the piece, that it needed very little editing, and she was posting it on the church blog. My writing career had begun.

We became friends. We attended writer’s conferences and workshops, including She Speaks. We took a trip to the Kiamichi Mountains with other friends for our own writing retreat. We started our own writers group and led women’s Bible studies together.

She called to let me know when her first article was accepted in a national magazine. She rejoiced with me over my first publication.

Without her encouragement and support, I probably wouldn’t be writing today.

Angel 1

Write Your Story Angel

But my friend is moving away. She came to our critique group Monday—one of her last nights to attend. At the close of the meeting, she said, “I have something for you.”

Outside, she handed me a gift bag with instructions not to open it until I got home. “You need to keep it by your writing desk. I have a matching one,” she said. “And it will be at my desk.”

I came home, opened my gift, and cried.

But this isn’t the end. Our friendship will last, over time, over distance, through thick and thin. God bless you, Rhodema, and thank you, my friend.

There is a friend who sticks closer than a brother (Proverbs 18:24b)

Angel 2

  • Joan, what a sweet story of friendship. I am sad your friend is moving away. The gift she gave you is so special,

    • Thank you, Pamela. I’ll always treasure this little gift and her friendship. Although we do plan to see one another at times, I’ll still miss her.

  • Angel @ Finding The Inspiring

    This brought tears to my eyes. What a great friend and such a thoughtful gift. And I love that scripture. It’s awesome to know that God’s call and gifts to us are treasures we keep forever. Just like true friends.

    • Thank you, Angel. I cried again as I typed it and read it back to my husband. And yes, His gifts and calling are to be treasured.

  • What a lovely story Joan, I hope your friendship stays strong across the miles, but then, two writers should be able to do that, right?

    • Absolutely, Kathleen! We writers know how to do it right. Blessings!

  • Touching story of friendship. You are blessed to have Rhodema as a friend.

    • I agree, Sherrey. She is a blessing to me!

  • What a great story Joan. It’s so wonderful to have a friend/friends who are like-minded. I have a few writer friends who have been such a blessing.

    • Thanks, Dave. I agree, having like-minded friends are a blessings. We would always laugh if we were out together with our husbands. They would give one another “the look” when we started to talk writing.