If you’re on Facebook, you are familiar with “Words with Friends”. If not, it’s like Scrabble. You can play the game on your phone with friends hundreds of miles away or with an electronic challenger. You can even play a solo game to enhance your skills.

Last week, a friend I’ve known for decades flew in to visit. In the course of our conversations, she invited me to play “Words with Friends” –namely her.  Once I was on, another friend from a different life season invited me to play. I had two games going at once. I lost the games, but it was a fun way to connect.

Our actual live words with friends during her five-day visit were nothing like the game (which we play now that she’s home.) We weren’t limited to seven letters and words that fit. We never passed and turned in our tiles. Totally heartfelt and transparent. Life-giving. Some conversations were so deep we felt we had hit double letter and triple word scores.

As we covered our decades, we reminisced…

From party lines to I phones

From dorm life to struggling grad students

From carbon paper to computers

From challenging professors to wondering how we made it

From the same major to different venues to practice our profession

From remembering extended families to life and loss

From ethnic heritage to retaining traditions

From choices to paths in different directions

From our love of food to new recipes

From eighteen-year old freshmen to dare I say it—senior citizens

Yes, we laughed, shed a tear or two, filled in the sentences and paragraphs where each of us only knew highlighted titles.

We found a common thread in every season: God’s provision and blessings. Make that two threads We woke each morning wondering what’s left to talk about—then filled in a day without silence.

Friendship…an extraordinary treasure, much like the song from my childhood. “Make new friends…but keep the old. One is silver and the other gold”

I hope you have that treasure of a special friendship, whether it has lasted decades or a few years.  Either way, perhaps today is a day to make a phone call or write a note and tell someone.

Pure gold.

For more on words with friends, click here to read Paul Tripp’s devotion.

Well into the first semester, here are 15 Timely Thoughts to Encourage College Freshmen

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