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July 11, 2011

            While visiting my friend, Dave, in Holland, MI, I accompanied him to the train station to pick up his wife, Barb. Dave pulled along the curb at the depot as the train pulled into the station. As Dave went out to meet Barb, I thought moving to the back seat would be the appropriate etiquette. So I stepped out of the car and tried the back door – locked. So, I opened the front door and pushed up the power lock button. I stepped back out of the car and tried the back door again – still locked! HORRORS, I had also shut the front door and I was now locked out! The keys were in the car and the car was running! I wanted to be small enough to crawl thought a crack in the frame and turn the car off! I wishfully tried all the doors with no luck. I looked across the driveway and my friends were coming straight for the car as I stood helpless beside the car.

             When I confessed my error, we went into damage control mode. I owe a deep debt of gratitude to their son, Nathan, who baled me out by bringing the spare key from home. However, to add insult to injury, the sky opened up and absolutely dumped. In the short dash from the depot to the car, we got soaked!

            Despite all my missteps, one thing was never in doubt – our friendship. I gave Dave and Barb enough reasons to put me on the next train out of town, but they never threatened or blasted me. Unconditional acceptance is an incredible gift. Their kindness yielded some great days of sharing life. Knowing I couldn’t misbehave my way out of the friendship meant I couldn’t talk my way out of it either.

            If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up! Ecclesiastes 4:10. Reading the Bible is great. Living it out with friends is the best. Thanks Dave and Barb.

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