Today, I was commenting to a friend about an "impending" fear I have. She had various encouraging comments but one was a quote that she had heard earlier today ... I hope I have it right ... "Do you believe that what you really believe is really real?"
Tonight, not long after that conversation, my teenage daughter and I were surprised by a call from a former friend of hers. I say former because some things happened during the last school year that drove them apart.
Let's start at the beginning ... this girl moved into our school district from the neighboring one. She came from a hurting home and moved down the street with her mother. My daughter befriended her and for a while, they were very good friends. We welcomed her into our home and I tried to do what I could. I knew the family didn't have much and as I sat at one of their volleyball games, I noticed that she could really use a new pair of sneakers. At the time, it was easier for me to give her cash than to take the time to take her shopping. I did nothing more ... I didn't even think to pray for her ... at least not that I can remember. And that makes me sad.
(Note to self: next time TAKE THE TIME ... and PRAY)
As we all know, there is a LOT of drama in high school, maybe more so between girls. And this friendship was no exception. I did my best to support the situation while letting them try to sort things out on their own. And then the threats of physical harm began. Toward my daughter and a few of her friends ... both male and female. Thankfully, that's all they were ... threats. And thankfully, the administration took care of everything necessary at the time. And at the end of the school year, this girl moved back across the district line. We saw her once at the movie theater this fall. My daughter was worried. I tried to ease the fear and make light of it. And then I never really thought of her again.
(Note to self: next time, DON'T forget)
Thankfully, God did not forget her. She called us tonight ... us ... my daughter AND me. She wanted to apologize for everything that she did and said last spring. You see, she recently tried to commit suicide by overdosing. She said that she had a lot of time to think during her recovery and she thought about us and the other kids involved. And she just wanted to apologize and thank us for being kind to her.
(Note to self: ALWAYS be kind)
We just do not comprehend the implications of what we do and say every day. I did nothing more than open my home to this girl while she was here and give her some cash to buy some sneakers. But she remembered. And maybe those small kindnesses will be paid forward to someone else when she is in the position to do so.
Moral of the story: Don't give up on your teenagers or their friends or their "frenemies" ... don't ever give up. You just don't know what God is going to do with them ... or you.
Now, back to that question: Do I believe that what I really believe is really real? I sure do! Because God didn't have to save that girl. He didn't have to turn her heart around. And He certainly didn't have to lay it on her heart to call us and apologize and thank us! But He did.
(Note to self: tonight, don't forget to THANK HIM!)