When we were sent to the hospital to deliver our stillborn baby, I had nothing more than my purse and the clothes on my back. I had 3 very good friends who quickly came to my aide. Apparently all I asked for was a toothbrush. My friends are like me, they needed jobs to do; however, I wasn’t in a state to assign them. Luckily, they got creative and took charge for me. One friend went and got comfortable clothes from Target for Chris & myself. Two of my friends went to my house and got all the necessities- clothes, outfit for the baby (luckily I had just gotten that a few weeks prior), toiletries, phone chargers, and so many other things we needed. They were all blessings to me when I needed them most and when I couldn’t think for myself. Another couple who live in Jackson was kind enough to bring me whatever food I wanted as eating hospital food was not something I was too fond of.
As time goes on, many of the details from that tragic day have faded and I’m sure some of that is to help ease the pain. What I do remember is how those friends stepped up and showed out that day. To be perfectly honest, I’m sure they would have rather been ran over by a freight train then waiting on our stillborn baby to be born. Heck, I didn’t want to be there either! It was a Friday night and those three friends who had jobs and families chose to be at the hospital with me. They each drove 1 hour and two of them drove a total of 3 hours after driving back to my house to gather stuff and bring it back to the hospital. When life knocks the breath of you, you need your tribe and luckily for me on March 8, 2014, some of my tribe showed up & showed out.
Showing up can be the best gift you can give a friend or loved one. Romans 12:15 reminds us to “rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.” 1 Corinthians 12:26 tells us “And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it.” I promise that friends truly grieve with you and celebrate with you as well. Sometimes social media makes it appear like we have tons of “friends”; however, when the going gets tough, many of those “friends” become crickets.
Having a ton of friends does not always equal help in a time of need. Proverbs 18:24 reminds us “A man of too many friends comes to ruin, But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” I am blessed to have several true friends in my life who are like family, and goodness gracious they must really love me to continue to show up and show out for me!
While you can’t possibly be everything to everyone, make a commitment to be there for the ones closest to you. If for no other reason, “This is my commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you.” John 15:12-13 I can promise you that if you show up for your close friends, your time will be worth gold to them.