She sat in the front seat of my Vibe, angry and fuming after a break up with a boy who didn’t treat her kindly. We were on our way to a girls’ night, so there wasn’t much time to delve into all of the details, but I knew enough to share with her from my heart about my own experience after breaking up with a boy who didn’t treat me kindly.
Two years later and she’s moved away and isn’t riding in the Vibe, but we’re still emailing about who we’re dating. Now the conversations are different. Maybe because we’re both older, maybe because the guys we’re seeing now treat us more than kindly, maybe because we’ve experienced God’s faithfulness in our brokenness. Whatever the reason, our emails inevitably shift from boys and dating, to being open in those relationships, to being open in our personal relationships with God. That this is the pattern we find ourselves in makes my heart fill up with love for her and for our friendship and for God. And today, that’s saving me.
She’s 19, she’s in college, and she’s so one of “my girls.” She hasn’t sat in my Sunday school class or across from me at Starbucks in more than a year, and most of our contact these days happens over Facebook. But, I’m still so proud of her, as if I were still involved in the day-to-day way that she lives her life. She works hard in her classes, and takes her studies seriously. She’s thoughtful about the kind of artist and person she wants to be in the world. She and her boyfriend model a healthy, God-centered relationship. And even though she has deeply invested relationships with other people, her relationship with Jesus is the most important. And that reality bleeds through every post and text and email.
That I got to walk with her through her last two years of high school, that I got to sit with her and share coffees and pastries and real conversations, that I was invited into the deepest hurts of her life and allowed to help her figure out how to handle them with the love of Christ is a gift from God himself.
That she is not the only young woman who trusts me with her hurts, and wants me to celebrate her joys, and who thinks I’m cool enough to hang out with even though I try to stick to a ten o’clock bedtime is an overwhelming blessing.
Today, the emails I exchanged with one are filling me up with love not only for her but for the others.
Today, love for them is pointing me toward Love Himself.
And today, Love is saving me.
This post was written as part of Sarah Bessey’s synchroblog, “What’s Saving You Today.” That’s fancy blogging lingo that basically means a bunch of brave, honest people are writing about the same topic. Join the fun!