Too often the message we hear at church or in the media at this time of year is that Christmas is a time for families. For example this morning at church my pastor prayed a special prayer to bless families and those who came with their family, sadly no mention was made of those who came alone or with friends. This kind of treatment can make those of us who are single, divorced, widowed, without children or who are living far from family, that Christmas is not a time for us.
Two weeks ago I had to say goodbye to a dear friend and colleague who, due to family circumstances had to relocate back to her home country. I felt so sad seeing her leave and I have missed her presence so much since then. As I thought about our friendship, in her absence, it caused me to reflect on why I hadn’t appreciated our friendship more fully while she was around.