“Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints” Philemon 7
My dear and beloved friend,
I just wanted to write to you today to say, THANK YOU! I appreciate you so much! The love you have shown me has so greatly refreshed me. I felt the need to attempt to write in words some of the ways your love has encouraged me and brought me great joy.
When you sent me that card for no reason, it arrived at the perfect time. I was feeling down that day. I was so sad. I can’t even explain what it was that was getting me down; I was just in a gloomy mood. I was flipping through the pile of mail when amidst the envelopes was a treasure addressed to me with your name on the return label. It was as if the clouds had parted and a vibrant ray of sunshine beamed upon my heart warming the cold gloominess away.
I am sorry that I missed your call the other day, I was engaged in a conversation that I needed to give my full attention to. The voice mail that you left was so encouraging. You didn’t seem at all upset that I had missed another call. Instead you expressed how much you missed me and how deeply you were praying for me. Instead of feeling guilty I felted so appreciated.
Thank you for your smile. You shine so beautifully when you share it with the world. Your smile is so big I can see it in your eyes. It is the first thing that greets me when we meet and it gives me the welcome feeling of home.
Thank you for your hugs. You know just when they are needed and what kind to give. I love the upbeat I miss you hugs! I cherish the last parting hug before we say goodbye. But, most of all, I am grateful for the hugs that reassure me that everything will work out in the end; the long ones where you openly accept me collapsing into you when I feel that I am broken beyond repair.
You have an amazing knack for remembering the little things in my life, things that are important to me. We don’t spend our time discussing generalities like the weather or politics, instead our time is focused on how we are really doing. You ask about the people I care about the most. You support the projects that I am working on, sharing your wisdom in a way that really enhances the time I pour into them. Even the way you confront me and challenge me, I so deeply appreciate it because it expands and enriches who I am. I am better for every moment we spend together.
Thank you for your text message. It was like you were watching me that day, taking in all of the struggles and emotions. I was blindsided by your goodness.
Thank you for your patience with me. I can be so stubborn, so impatient. I can be so determined to make it all work on my own. But the truth is that I couldn’t make it through life without you. Thank you so much for hanging in there, for not walking away from me even in the ugliest moments that I have had. I’m sorry that I can be so selfish. Thank you for seeing past that and for having such a strong hope that I would get it sooner or later.
Thank you for your grace. I have said and done some truly horrible things. The way you have treated me was not deserved on my part. I hurt you and for that I am so sorry. Yet through it all your love for me never stopped. You stuck with me and we were blessed with a way to work it out. I deeply regret what I did. In response you showed me forgiveness. You didn’t allow it to make you bitter, but your peaceful kindness sure made it better.
Most of all I appreciate your love of the LORD. It is clear to see that you love Him with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind and all your strength. I feel it whenever we are together or whenever we are talking. You have such a deep joy from it. Others find there is a great peace that surrounds you. I can say from experience that it just draws others to you, but then you so graciously turn them towards God because you know without a doubt that He is the source of abundant life that we all need.
You have done so much for me my dear friend and it all flows through the love you have shown me. Reflect upon my words for just a moment; this is only a sampling of the ways your love has refreshed my life. Out of my gratitude to you, I offer up this prayer.
Thank You so much for creating my friend. Thank You for weaving us together by Your golden thread of grace in the tapestry of life. I cherish this gift.
Please help my friend today to feel a return of the love they pour out to me and to all the others in their lives. May Your abundant measure be used to find favor upon them.
What a treasure You have made in my friend, so wonderfully crafted by Your hand. I rejoice over Your masterpiece!
In Jesus’ name, amen.