Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The Gift of Presence

I had dinner with a friend yesterday.  It had been a while since we had gotten together just the two of us and we finally got around to scheduling something and making it happen.  I can't tell you how much of a gift it was to have a simple dinner with a friend.  We took our time.  I got to her place at 6:30 and didn't leave to head home until 10.  In such a hurried world where everyone is in such a rush and everyone has so many things to do, it was such a blessing to feel the freedom to relax and enjoy the company of a friend without a strict time limit.

I went home feeling strengthened, unburdened and at peace.  Why? What caused that?  It wasn't the meal even though dinner was great.  It wasn't dessert.  Although I have to say that the frozen yogurt we picked up after dinner came close to changing my life!  It was the best frozen yogurt I had ever had.  I strongly recommend that you find your way to a Pinkberry in Cambridge or Boston if possible.  It will change your life or come pretty close :)  Anyway, as good as my mango frozen yogurt topped with fresh strawberries was (Thank you Jesus), that's not what made me feel better.  I felt better simply being in the presence of someone who cares for me.  It was the gift of her presence to me that made me feel better, made my problems feel more manageable, made me feel less alone.

The gift of presence.  There's really no substitute for it.  Especially when someone is hurting it's the best gift you can give.  Simply be present.  I know we're all very busy with so many things to do, but I would like to put forth a challenge.  Get better at responding to your emails.  Get better at returning your phone calls.  Get better at following up with a friend who wants to get together.  Give someone the gift of your presence.  It's more powerful than you probably realize.  Don't underestimate the difference it may make in someone's life.  Simply be present to those you say you care about.  You may change a life without ever knowing it.  Give someone the gift of your presence.  You are needed more than you realize.

Following the Way,

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