Remembering and Grieving a Friend

The Bombers had their first home game of the year yesterday. A preason game. It reminded me of the games a group of friends, including Timmy and I, would go to and watch at the “old stadium.”

Have you ever seen the movie “Planes, Trains and Automobiles?” John Candy and Steve Martin are driving down this highway at night and accidentally cross over to the other side without either of them knowing it. A couple on the other side of the road see them going the wrong way down the highway, and they shout out at them: “You’re going the wrong way!”

It became an ongoing joke when the Bombers started running back instead of forward after a kickoff or handoff, Timmy, the gang and I would should out, “You’re going the wrong way! Turn around. Turn around!!!” It was so funny. Oh we had good times. Timmy was a stellar example of being positive and enjoying life even when things weren’t going so well. Like some of the Bomber seasons, for example.

And thinking about Timmy, it seems, in his own quiet way, he was showing us something similar.

Timmy was a man at peace. Calm. Content.  “If we have food and clothing with these we will be content.” But are we? Is there a subtle message in our culture – Christian, Western, or both, that says, yes we should be content but only after we have achieved this and that? We need that next thing and then we will be content?

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Our band played a Johnny Cash tune one time: “I’ve got Jesus and that’s enough.”

That was (is) Timmy.

I stopped by Peter and Teresa and Alex and Zoe’s place on Sunday evening. Continue reading

Will Jesus Remember You?

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My friend’s funeral was this week. Timmy Woelk died last Saturday while hiking in the Whiteshell. I had known Tim for 23 years. There’s something comforting about knowing someone and having someone know you. The world feels different now that he is gone. Have you ever lost someone close to you? Do you ever get those knee jerk reactions when you are about to email or call or text them and realize – they aren’t there anymore. Continue reading

Friends

Where would any of us be without them?

I am blessed with incredible friends. People I am honoured to know. People who have helped me. People whom I have been able to help. Friends through family, church, work, film, school, the boards I have a privilege to be a part of.

Genuine friendship is a connection that is impossible to lose.

It’s a two way street that strengthens each person.

Proverbs says: “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.”

Somebody once said that we read so that we know we are not alone. I wonder if in some sense this is why friends are so critical. That ability to connect. To listen. To share. To feel that our thoughts, attitudes and beliefs find a similar chord in another person.

Friends provide fun, laughter, critical feedback and a listening ear. As I look back on the indescribable friends that I have, all I can say is that they are a gift.

What did I ever do to deserve such great people in my life?

Nothing.

And in some sense, I think that undeserved kindness is the foundation of any great friendship.

How is it in your life? Have you had good friends? Friends that have seen you through great times and difficult times?

How would you describe your friends?

Still, not everyone has good friends. Some are out there looking. Some through their own fault or through no fault of their own find themselves on the outside and have given up looking in.

Or looking up.

Maybe there is someone around you who needs a friend. Maybe you could be that person that helps them find their way.

You never know the impact you might have.

I remember a dear friend of mine ‘happened’ to have a few minutes for me at a time when I was at a real crossroads and couldn’t see my way through. Life is full of incredible adventures. It’s the journey that matters. The destination is somewhat irrelevant. Still, there are times when the valley can get a little shadowy.  And this friend spoke words that to this day still encourage me. God really does give us people who speak the right thing in the right season.

And for all my many friends in all the different places I have been, I simply can not thank enough. You are a treasure to me and I am grateful for the many great times we have yet to share.