Hope you’ve had a wonderful week. It has been another beauty here in Tennessee and that’s bad. We desperately need rain, not just because the drought is hurting agriculture but because we have all sorts of forest fires that are overwhelming firefighters and causing terrible air quality. Outdoor sports activities have been cancelled all week and visibility is limited, especially in the valley. I never knew I would be able to distinguish between low-lying fog and smoke so easily, but after a few days you can totally tell the difference. And when you step outside it is hard to believe that the fire is not in your own backyard. Prayers for rain would be appreciated. Here are a few pictures I’ve taken this November of the magnificent colors we are soaking in.
From my front porch this morning!
This is a view of the sun setting over Lookout Mountain — except you can’t see the mountain at all because of all the smoke
A clear day from Point Park
Another clear day from Point Park with smoke in the valley
It is hard to believe that we are coming up on the one-year anniversary of our move. I plan to write a few posts about how that all went down because it was an interesting period of my life, and God was so faithful. I try hard not to have specific or high expectations, but there is a part of me that thought (hoped) that one year in I’d feel more settled, or connected or…something. If you read my blog regularly, you know I love living here. I think it’s an incredible place to live — there are so many great things about it. I cannot imagine Will and Nate at any other school — it is so perfect for them. We love our church. My husband’s job is fantastic. I cannot get over how beautiful the area is. Our house is awesome. There are so many great ways to spend time outside, and the climate is just right (all four seasons but a pretty abbreviated winter). I do a women’s Bible study at our church, and I adore those women, some of whom look like babies having babies, and I got to hold one baby girl this week for almost the whole class. But one thing I do not have is a best friend. And as generally happy as I am, there is a voice of discontent whispering in my ear, “Who’s your best friend, Kristie? Why can’t you make a super close friend? It’s been a year, you loser. What’s wrong with you?”
The candid observations of my boys are not helpful either. Early on Will noted that “no one needs a friend.” Then just the other day Sam dryly stated, “You know, Mom, the thing about living here is that I don’t have any old friends.”
They are right, on both these fronts. Yet I had an old friend remind me of an important truth just this week: things change and they change even if your geography stays the same. The era of raising little kids alongside sweet friends is what I think I’m missing the most. But if we’d stayed in Virginia I’d still have a son in high school, my life would be very different than it was when all three of my boys attended the same tiny school. That era would be over no matter what. I needed reminding of that this week.
In addition, to the timely wisdom of my friend, I’ve heard another voice whispering in my ear, and it’s not one of discontent, it’s One of truth. “Kristie, my love. I’m your best friend. I’m with you always, even to the end of the age. I will never leave you or forsake you. Nothing can ever separate you from my love. I am beside you every step, Beloved. Rest in that peace. Let Me carry all your burdens.”
I’m sure one day I’ll have closer friends here in Tennessee but I hope I never take my true best friend for granted, the author and perfecter of my faith: Jesus Christ.
I hope you too cherish your best-ever friend, whether you know loneliness down in your bones, or your cup runneth over with loving friends, the fact is the same no matter the circumstance: No one can ever know you or love you like Jesus does.
Have a wonderful weekend, friends, please know that Jesus loves you and so do I!