I look back over this last full week with wonder. Every day we enjoyed meals with different groups of friends, including a couple of large groups who brought pot-luck suppers to share. Among the highlights was a reunion with our First Friday group (which now actually meets on the second Saturday each month!) 15 gathered for a pot-luck supper.
Conversation among us was lively = noisy (as it always is!) The last part however was memorable. Time was spent going round the table as each of us shared a particular blessing for which we wanted to give thanks to God. I was struck by the seriousness and intensity as people took turns. A couple of people paid moving tributes to their spouses and families; others spoke about the quality of friendship and prayer support that the group had provided - several of us have been ill recently with three of us men undergoing cancer surgery. Another group member has just become engaged and he told us the story of his proposal on bended knee at the arboretum. Apparently, he shared his desire to marry a few years ago for support, and he gave thanks for the long-term prayers of members of the group. Another gave heartfelt praise that his relatives who live on a farm in Rochelle had survived the tornado that had ripped the roof off their house and flattened farm building three days earlier. Another, told us how his daily devotions with his wife every morning had transformed his working days.
When we concluded with prayers for each other I marveled that we belong so securely to this group of friends. As we drove home we said: 'This is real Christian fellowship - and the Atlantic cannot get in the way.'