Farewell, My Friend

Becky Done

One of my dearest friends passed away last Tuesday after a battle with cancer. We made an unlikely pair, Becky and me. She was everything I’m not. Extroverted. Set a Martha Stewart dinner table. Laughed easily while glowing with a deep love for others.

When I first met Becky Done, she struck me as kind of syrupy. That sweetness proved to be anything but artificial. Pure, golden honey, this chick. One of the most Christ-like people I’ve ever known.

Interesting thing about honey, this sticky favorite of Winnie-the-Pooh fame also doubles as an ancient wound treatment. Honey actually combines with the body’s fluids to create hydrogen peroxide, keeping the wound bacteria-free. Becky worked wonders with wounds also. Godly counsel, grace-filled hugs, and intercessory prayer came freely. She wasn’t afraid to get in your face too if you needed it, though I never saw judgment. Ever. She raised your game just by being in the room. She loved fiercely and challenged me to do the same.

But she was also a lot of fun. Honey, for all its healing properties, just tastes good. And there’s no flavor like Becky Done. Eyes sparkling, she would giggle and squeeze your arm, laughing over card games, a funny comment, or something silly the grandkids had done. She could throw a shower with little to no effort, or so it seemed, but then, Becky made every occasion a party.

So, when the first diagnosis came, I was shocked, and, truthfully, unable to grasp why God had permitted this as Becky’s daughter had recently battled breast cancer. When Becky’s cancer returned, I was stunned.

Where was God in this?

He was there. Always had been. Never left her for a moment. Now, they’re sharing a laugh, guacamole (a favorite), and some chips. Anyone can sing God’s praises in the good times. To sing them as you walk through the valley of the shadow of death requires the real stuff. A faith-based relationship rooted in God’s Word. Through her battle and in those painful final weeks, Becky never stopped singing His praises. She sings them still, now face to face.

I love you, my friend. Thank you for teaching me to love better, to love deeper, to love stronger. Give Jesus a hug and I’ll see you when it’s my turn.

Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his faithful servants. Psalm 116:15 NIV

Knit Together

Knit Together

“Now it came about when he [David] had finished speaking to Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as himself.” (1 Samuel 18:1 NASB)

Knit together. I love Samuel’s imagery. One soul knit to another’s in friendship.

Knitting is no easy task, you know. I tried a knitting class one summer. My classmates could have been contemporaries of my grandmother and, at minimum, had experience with crochet.

Me? I could cross stitch.

The gray hairs clicked away, chatting as their length of knitting grew and grew. I counted stitches, cursing under my breath, until I finally eeked out a recognizable row of ribbing. I think I was sweating.

How much more difficult is it for two hearts to be knit together?

Different fibers.

Different colors.

Different textures.

Let’s train in craft class with David and Jonathan. Look at their different skeins.

1. Socio-economic: Prince and pauper. Sovereign and shepherd. Top of the ladder and bottom rung.

2. Family ties: The tribe of Benjamin and the tribe of Judah. Could there be any remaining hostility over the Joseph thing? (Genesis 37:26-28)

3. Callings: Supportive follower and anointed leader.

Knit.

Together.

But don’t think threads never frayed or stitches weren’t dropped. Jonathan took a lot of heat from his father for his friendship with David (1 Samuel 20:30-34). And there were times David thought Jonathan completely clueless about Saul’s intentions (1 Samuel 20:1-3).

Yet, these two made three different covenants pledging themselves to each other and to their families (1 Samuel 18:1-4; 20:13-17; 23:16-18). After Jonathan’s death, David intentionally sought out Jonathan’s son to show him kindness because of their friendship (2 Samuel 9).

So, has God tried to tie you to an unlikely piece of yarn? Have you fought the knitting needles?

You could be missing one of God’s better blessings.

Nail your workouts this week and change your corner of the gym.

Workout of the Week: Knit Together

Memory Verse: “Now it came about when he [David] had finished speaking to Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as himself.” (1 Samuel 18:1 NASB)

Meditation Passage: 1 Samuel 23:15-18

Just Do It: Don’t tangle God’s work.