Have you ever had the mully-grubs*? I have and one day when I had a particularly bad case, I said to God, “I need a friend.” I was feeling pretty sorry for myself and I thought, “Most of the people I know appear to have more than enough people in their lives and probably don’t have time for anyone else.”
I sat for a little while wondering to myself, how is He going to do it? I don’t go places to meet new people and everyone I meet seems to already be too busy to take time for me.
Did God answer my simple prayer? You bet. He didn’t bring a line-up of people into my presence and say, “Choose you some friends from this group.”
God spoke simply to me, “If you want to have a friend, you have to be a friend!”
As I reflect back, God allowed me to just keep going, doing the thing I love most, meeting people.
It has been amazing to watch how people have come into my life. In many cases, God showed me a person with a need (most of the time minor) and then nudged me to check on them. God reminded me of friends from the past who were in similar situations as I and encouraged me to call them. I learned that most of the time people only want a friendly face and an offer to pray with them.
I soon realized that I was no longer friendless and that I never was. Often, I just needed to make the first contact.
I learned a really good lesson on friendship from Carter Bryars, a long time friend. Carter sold industrial equipment in the Mobile area and was very good at it. I used some of the equipment he sold but I was a little afraid of meeting him because one friend told me, “He is a super salesman.” I didn’t know if I could resist buying things I didn’t need from a real pro.
Then one day I met him and he was not like I imagined at all. He was friendly, outgoing, and talked almost non-stop but he never asked me to buy anything. He did tell me the types of things he sold and offered to help me anytime I needed something. He never bragged but he let me know that he started with Gulf Coast Marine right out of high school and except for a few years fighting during World War II (he charged the beaches of Normandy on D-Day) he worked there his entire life.
He checked in with me regularly and always asked about any problems and continued to offer to help me. When I finally called him and told him I needed help, it wound up that he could not sell the product I needed for geographical reasons within their distribution. That didn’t matter to him; he worked like he was going to make a fortune off my one little order that would go to his competitor. He was always like that and over the years I wound up buying a lot of stuff from his company because I could and I wanted to.
Carter lived a long full life and has gone on to be with The Lord now. He told me once, “I never asked a friend for his business but every person I ever did business with became my friend.” What a legacy.
I am grateful for each and every person in my life and especially for those who have become my friends because our children and grandchildren are getting busier and have other activities and people they are spending time with.
Do I have all the friends I need? No way and if you would like to be my friend just reach out to me.
*Definition: mully-grubs – A period of time when one is feeling down and out. Depressed, hopeless, lonely and sad. – From the Urban Dictionary
by Wayne Brady 4/1/2013