Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Letters to My Friends

I used to write letters.

It was one of my favorite things to do.

I loved the many patterns of stationary,
and writing clean, straight lines across a page.

I loved that words could raise life again from the dead fibers of the tree.

I don't write on trees very often these days.

I had this charming idea this morning.
I want to write letters to my friends again.
And because I am disciplining myself to write regularly, I thought Tuesdays would be wonderful letter-writing days.  Because this is the beginning of a dream, I'm not sure what will unfold.  I hope this becomes a place to share letters with each other.  For that I will need to learn a few more technical things, like how to set up a link to this blog.  But today I will focus on the part I love, and I have just the friend in mind.  I hope her letter might be exactly the words you needed to hear this day as well.

Dear Friend,

I wish you were here with me.

I know, that sounds so canned.  But I do.  I know you would love the peacefulness of the river, the vineyards sloping up the valley walls, and the quaint villages along the Mosel.  After we strolled the streets I would take you to my favorite little hotel in Bielstien and we would sit under the grapevines on the terrace, sipping wine and watching the river slip by soundlessly.

We would be quiet with one another.

Yea, I know ~ that would last for all of 15 minutes.  Then we would get all chatty until we closed the terrace down.  No worries, friend.  They serve a great cup of coffee at the Hotel Lipmann as well.

I am really proud of you.  I know this first year, trying to live into wholeness after separation has been difficult.  But you have done it with grace.  And a lot of coffee.  I know.

Thank you for letting me and Ken be your family and help share your burdens.  I wish we still lived there.  I would put a surprise flower on your desk at work.  Or pick the girls up from school and insist you go home and take a bubble bath.  Or lace up my running shoes and pound out a few miles together regularly.  But most of all, I would just be there to give you a hug.  Followed by a cup of coffee.  I know.

I was reading through a letter I wrote you a few years ago.  Do you remember it?

I just want you to know that you and ***** and the girls are in my conversations with God. 
We talk about your strength, wisdom, patience, and joy. 
We talk about your marriage ~ your hopes for it’s wholeness, fullness, and centeredness in Christ. 
Your marriage as the most tangible understanding of your love relationship with Christ. 
Your marriage as a legacy to your children and those you model to. It’s joy. 
We talk about your children ~ your witness, your responsibilities, their hearts, minds, souls and strength. Their joy. 
We talk about your friends ~ your influence, your service, your practice of selflessness with those that sometimes disappoint. Their joy. 
We talk about your community and your world ~ your response to God’s justice and mercy, your exercise of these gifts in the world. Your joy. 
I love talking to God about you. My friend. My sister. 
I pray you will encounter God in a new way.
I pray you will be restored, refreshed, convicted, and filled to overflowing by the Holy Spirit.
I pray you will experienced Agape love in the fellowship of believers in a way that gives amazing hope for what the unity of the Bride of Christ is intended to be on this earth - in this period we wait longingly for the return of Christ.
I pray you grasp how lovely, beautiful, and exquisite you are to the Lord. 
“I am my Beloved’s, and his desire is for me.” Song of Songs 7:10
I pray that you boldly live into your faith, knowing that Christ alone truly is enough.
You are my friend.
Always my sister.

I just wanted you to know that I'm still talking to God about you.  I'm thanking Him for His grace in your life, and the witness He is sharing through you of the marriage of mercy and justice.  Thank you for your courage, friend.

... counting a few graces because of you...
*you have a community of believers to support you
*you have family who loves you
*you have a job where you are supported
*you have a home
*you have a college-aged daughter, who has grown to be a friend
*you have a teen-aged daughter, who reminds you to still dream 
*you have a little girl, who shares simplicity and joy and laughter (and maybe a bit of "why not?" strength some special people who see the world as not to be tamed are born with)
*you have friends who will not leave you
*you have a heart that is alive
*you have not stopped loving, even through the re-ordering of your life
*you have a God who knows you, loves you, and has plans for you
*you are my friend
*coffee ~ evidently from your daily facebook posts, an unlimited supply
*and you know how to laugh.

Now to slip this in the mail and go make dinner.  I'm looking forward to Tuesday Letters, Favored One.  And any other day you'd like to send me one!


  1. This is simply sweet and lovely. My mom is picking me up some notecards today because she thought of me when she saw them. That made me smile, and it gave me the desire to write more. Trees need to be written on occasionally. :)

    1. Enjoy the notecards! I know those you send them to will! What a wonderful mom, to know you like to write on trees! : )

  2. Beautiful!

    I too love handwritten notes. I don't Facebook. I find myself texting too much sometimes though. But handwritten notes....nothing like them! Stationary! Oh, to find the perfect notecards or paper with matching envelopes (stickers and colored pens help too). I've even gone so far as to purchase preteen stationary just for my girlfriends!

    1. I can tell you delight in writing! What a joy! And how thoughtful you are to share that with girlfriends. There is nothing quite like the friendship between women. Keep nurturing both! Favor to you!

  3. I like this idea, Tobi! I think everyone needs these reminders of love and encouragement.

    1. Thanks, Mandy. It was challenging to fall asleep last night, I was already drafting so many in my head! : ) It will be a few weeks before I can, and I would want some others to commit to it with me, but might you consider joining me in letter writing regularly? Blessings to you.

  4. You know I love reading what you write sooooo much. But I have to be honest that sometimes I avoid your blogs because I end up in tears so often when I read them. They are rarely tears of sadness, though. Like right now - I have tears of joy streaming down my face. I still remember being very lonely and praying to God to just send me a friend to have coffee with. As He so often does He answered both my spoken and unspoken prayer and sent me not only a "coffee buddy", but a lifelong friend and sister of my heart.

    I love you.

    And, now I have to go wash my face - again.


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