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More than just a cup of coffee — friendship that lasts forever

By Helen Hosier
You can meet some of the nicest people over a cup of coffee. In fact, these encounters can result in life-changing friendships, and for sure, enriching relationships that go on to last forever.
For instance, my friend, Anna, and I meet once weekly and the week just goes so much better after we’ve visited for awhile. In fact, the world looks nicer after we’ve straightened everything out that’s wrong and solved some of its many problems. We agree that we are great problem-solvers.
I’m usually the beneficiary, too, of her generosity — figs, peaches, oranges, berries, apricots, lemons. Have I forgotten anything? I hope not! Oh yes, walnuts!
This brings me to something that’s really on my heart as I sit here at my computer. You never know what will appear on your email screen. Today was a hard/sad day when an email message informed me that one of my all-time dearest friends had gone to be with the Lord.
There would be no more emails from Harry; never again will we have a cup of coffee together down here.
You see, I met Harry over a cup of coffee at a Flower Mound, Texas Starbucks a number of years ago. When we moved back to California, it was very hard saying goodbye to this treasured friend, but we promised to stay in touch and that’s what we’d done.
Meeting Harry wasn’t just a chance thing, it was a special gift from God that I know went both ways. We respected each other, we enjoyed every cup of coffee visit and left blessed by the friendship of the other.
It happened like this: As many of you know, I’m the platinum-haired lady who walks around town with a cane. My cane and I have been friends for many years. One Texas morning, I decided to take myself out for a cup of coffee. I needed to see other people, I’d been stuck behind the computer alone far too long — writing books requires a lot of isolation if you are going to finish a contractual assignment on time. So off I went.
As I stood in line, my cane dropped. I bent to pick it up and, as I turned, this dark-haired, dignified, handsome gentleman was behind me with my cane in his hand. “Oh, thank you, thank you so much, how kind….” And as I took the cane from his hand, my eyes saw his
T-shirt, and across the front it read GIDEONS.
“Ohhh,” escaped from my lips, “you are a Gideon. I love the Gideons. My husband was a Gideon….”
He looked at me kindly and replied, “I like Gideon wives,” and a friendship began that was truly amazing in every respect.
“You are a Christian,” he said. “Let’s have our coffee together and get to know each other better.”
From that point on, we met weekly until we left Texas. I met his lovely wife Pat, an awesome artist, who, like her husband, became a dear friend. Harry and Pat met my son, Kraig, and we enjoyed many happy times with them. And oh, how I missed those weekly Starbucks over a cup of coffee times.
But here’s the good news. Saying goodbye here is not forever. We are mortal here, but when you are a Christian believer, death is the doorway that ushers our immortal souls into Heaven where we will join others who have preceded us in death.
You may not believe or understand this, but the Bible shows us what is called The Way, and that is our Hope. If you have doubts or questions, there are several fine churches in this town and the pastors and people there will help you gain an understanding of these life and death questions.
I will see my friend, Harry, again. We will have eternity to enjoy being in the Presence of the Lord and with each other. Heaven is a wonderful reality, a welcoming place. The Bible promises, “Absent from the body, present with the Lord” (2 Cor. 5:8). I believe this, and it provides comfort, peace and hope for the here and now.
And now it’s time to meet my Winters friend for a cup of coffee.