This past week has been a fairly unique one for me. Not just because I’ve seen real rain for the first time in several months, but I’ve had a chance to reconnect and have several good conversations with an old friend who showed up after pretty much no contact for the past 3 years. I got a phone call on Monday of last week and my friend Mike called me to reconnect a bit. I had several questions, but we also had a good conversation for some time, and I ended, as I often do, by saying he was always welcome to visit and stay for a while if he ever needed. I was a bit surprised when I got a message the next day that he was catching a ride from 3 hours away in another state and would be stopping down later that day. I met him and got together a place where he could stay for however long he needed. Though work has become exponentially busier for me the past few weeks, I’ve found some time in the evenings to try to catch up a bit and mostly to be a listening ear for him to share some life experiences. It has been difficult, but a good time to grow. Is there someone in your life that you can sit and talk with for hours and become a better person for doing so?
Always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Ephesians 5:20
Around five years ago, Mike was accused of about the worst thing you could be accused of by his wife, as having harmed their children. These accusations were investigated and no evidence was found, except for the twisted words of a counselor who then convinced his wife these things were true. This eventually snowballed into a situation where lies were told in court and he was left without his wife and kids and that remains the same situation today. He says his marriage was not perfect leading up to this, but felt blindsided by this series of accusations that lead to this point. He still maintains his innocence and no evidence was ever found to discredit that fact, but yet finds himself in a place he never imagined could become a reality. As his friend, I prayed for both him and his wife, and even went to visit them years ago, but felt fairly helpless to do much to bring about any good resolution after hearing of the situation. What do you do when you feel unable to help someone you care about?
Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him; I will surely defend my ways to his face. Indeed, this will turn out for my deliverance, for no godless person would dare come before him! Job 13:15-16
Mike has been a strong Christian influence in my life for decades, but this happening to him you think would shake is faith, and it made him question some things, but he remains close to his Savior, as honestly that is about the only thing that hasn’t changed in his life. After being run through ringers of the legal system several times, left broke and without his family, you think he would be shaking his fist against God and anyone he trusts, like Job’s friends might suggest. He is frustrated, and left with little hope in the situation, but still remains married to the same woman, and does get to talk to his children occasionally, but doesn’t see much light for reconciliation there now, though he really only wants to be an active father to his children. As he relates the details of what has transpired over the past several years, it sounds more like a work of fiction than real life, but it happened. I pray with him and encourage him, but feel fairly limited in what I can do the help make things right again. I don’t know if they ever will be. But despite the calamities in life, we can still trust in the One who gave us life. Would you do the same?
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
Yours in Christ,