Make new friends but keep the old;
one is silver, the other gold.
We love living here. We are blessed with a comfortable house, a loving, happy, spiritual church, a supportive homeschool community, and less traffic than our everyday experience living in the Orlando area, and before that, the Atlanta area. We've been here six years now. It's silver.
Last week we spent some time with friends with whom we share a bit more history. Earthgirl and I went to our old church in the Orlando area, and spent a week with their Super Summer Singin' Funner music daycamp. I had a blast reconnecting with friends, many I've know for almost 20 years. Earthgirl endured grown-up after grown-up remembering her babyhood.
My old friends there are beyond special to me.
These friends surrounded us with love and support through YEARS of barrreness. These friends REJOICED when we learned we were expecting. Grown men cried with joy on our behalf. Then when we lost that first baby through miscarriage, these friends didn't just feel sorry for us; they MOURNED with us. They wrapped themselves around us and helped us carry a heavy burden of grief.
Then when we learned Earthgirl was coming, they rejoiced again, but like we did - carefully, praying every step of the way. And when she was born, they rejoiced and thanked God for His grace to us. Grown men cried. Again. And even now, they call her their Miracle Baby, born in the 15th year of our marriage, when we were both 40 years old. I hope will never forget the intense years we spent there, and how God gave us friends, just ordinary folks, who cared for us in an extraordinary way.
Proverbs 27: 10 tells us that "better is a neighbor who is near than a brother far away." Our family was all a state or more away from us while we waited for Earthgirl. Our neighbors who were near stood in for them, and became our family.