but keep the old. One is silver, the other is gold.
Were any of you sisters a girl scout growing up?
I remember sitting around a campfire with dozens of other scouts singing this in round. The harmony between the different parts along with the chill in the October night gave me goose bumps.
I still get goose bumps with this song. Because all of my life, I’ve made new friends and kept the old.
Keeping the old friends is so healing through life—you connect with them occasionally and they feel like touchstones to who you are. And the good ones will refresh you, cheer you on.
How has your friendship life been going since you lost your beloved? Have they scattered? Have they acted a bit different? Or have they been true blue—sticking with you from the start?
Or have you seen a little of the good and the awkward in each of your friendships. Loss does that. Many people are not sure how to interact with someone who has lost a husband.
It’s been many years for me, and I’ve chosen to put my kids first and turned away opportunities to date men who were almost right, but not quite the fit for my family. Leaving me relying on my friendships for my support network.
This song means a great deal to me, because sometimes a season for a friendship starts to wind down a bit. A friend moves, or a friend becomes preoccupied with a career and can’t spend the time with you, or a friend has something she’s struggling with and you with your big family to raise can’t really give her the support she needs so she has to turn to others as you just encourage as best you can.
That’s when the song is reassuring. Keep the old. No matter what the reason the season for lots of interaction between you winds down, don’t get frustrated with her. Be kind. Love her. Even if perhaps a misunderstanding or something not so kind on her part has put a wedge between you. Get with Christ and ask Him to open your heart to compassion for her and give you discernment as to how much or little time you need to devote to her. Then act according to His will and with love and positive attitudes towards her.
Then, she will always be your friend. Always.
Then make new friends. There are women everywhere feeling, like you, that they need a friend.
One of my newest friends is Cheri. We met by accident in pedicure chairs. As the pedicurist quizzed me on my love life (I was dating someone from another town at the time), I mentioned I was widowed.
“So was I,” Cheri said and introduced herself.
“And I’m dating a widower,” I added to my story.
“So did I,” Cheri added.
“And he lives in another state.”
“So did Jim, until we got married.”
It turned out that our lives, our values, and our personalities were so similar that we were instant friends.
How perfect that the Lord placed Cheri in my life at a time when my old friends were still there for me, but I felt the season of tight interaction with them winding down as their lives got busier with jobs and teenagers. I maintain friendships with my old friends, but having someone come along side of me in my new season is so precious to me!
It’s been a year now and Cheri has become invaluable to me, helping me locate a church that fit our family better and sticking with me as I use her as a sounding board on decisions I had to make with my teens.
God bless a good friendship.
One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.