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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

THE FRIEND

The fine rays of the morning sun shone upon us, spreading its warmth across the land. Azure blue skies lay before us, revealing white, puffy clouds. Birds glide gracefully across the sky above, declaring their mastery over that realm. The trees that lined our way swayed rhythmically by the morning zephyr. As the car came to a halt, I realized that we have reached our destination. There it lay before us, the double-storey, semi-detached house, welcoming us with wide open gates. The exterior portion of the house was surrounded by a small & simple garden, typical of the urban homes in that area. Potted plants lined along the fence, providing some foliage to the concrete jungle surrounding it. An old worn out swing, just like those pictured in antique, sentimental movies, where lovers frolicked under the sun, glazed the corner of the garden, providing a sense of nostalgia to the whole scene. As we approached the door, I could hear voices, singing in harmony with the accompaniment of music from within its walls. Placing my hand on the knob, I had no idea that this would be the moment that would change my life forever.

It has been almost eight years, but I can still remember that moment as if it was only yesterday. Back then, I was at the young, innocent age of nine. It was the first time my father, my brother and I stepped foot into a church. A part of me felt excited & overwhelmed with anticipation while the other half pounded with anxiety and fear. As I paced through the door, there lay before me, a whole new world, a world I have never seen before. There was something in the atmosphere that struck me. The interior portion of the house revealed a small, dimly lit hall, surrounded by white washed walls. The congregation was made out of approximately thirty people. They were standing up, their hands raised in the air & from their mouths came a sweet melody of voices ascending to heaven accompanied only by the gentle strumming of an old, worn out guitar. A sense of belonging and serenity washed over me as my heart bubbled with joy, wiping away the fears and doubts that lay within. It was then that I met Him, the man that would impact my life in every way, the most unforgettable character I have ever met.

Since that first encounter with Him, my life has never been the same. He was the perfect friend anyone could ever dream of. His face shone with the radiance of the sun, the sparkle in His eyes as bright as the twinkle of the North Star. His face displayed the innocence of a child, yet He was as majestic as a king. His voice, as gentle as the morning breeze, as peaceful as the gushing brooks beneath a waterfall and sweeter than the chorus of a songbird, as warming & refreshing as the heart of nature itself. The touch of His hand, warmer than a summer's day and as assuring as a mother's touch. His garments were as white as snow; its surroundings glittered with an angelic glow. That day, He extended His hand in friendship, and I opened my heart to Him.

Friendship, gentle as the dew from the silken skies, radiant as some glorious diadem, set with countless stars. It is said that a person is only complete when He has a true friend to understand Him, to share all His passions and sorrows and to stand by Him throughout His life. I have found that friend and He has been with me ever since. Everyday with Him is an odyssey, a new discovery in life and love. He completes my life, like pieces of a broken puzzle. His love overcomes every circumstance, like the dawn breaking through the darkness. How I long for Him, like a robin, waiting for the first rays of spring, like the cockerel awaits the sunrise. His love gives me life, like the sunshine on a blooming rose. His strength is made perfect when I am weak; it carries me through like the eagle, soaring on the winds. He is so awesome, so magnificent, so breath taking that I can't describe Him with mere words; He is incomprehensible. How could I ever imagine a life without Him. He is the very meaning of my life.

As I journey along this long road of life, He has always been there beside me, ever faithful, ever true. We have shared every laughter, every moment, every sorrow and every tear together. My sweetest memories and happiest moments in life evolve around Him for He is the source of my joy and the center of my happiness. I owe everything I am today to Him because He was the one who pushed me to the top, and led me to my dreams. He is my strength, my hope and my ever present help in time of need. He has guided me through the winding paths, the steepest hills and the darkest valleys of life. Through the storms of life, when darkness overwhelms me and I lose my direction, when all seems lost and hopeless, His love shines through the darkest nights, His peace comforts the weariest of souls. At the crossroads of my life, when the winding paths before me seem so uncertain and steep, His strength carries me through and His wisdom guides me towards my goal. When the world scorns and laughs at me, when the closest of my friends betray me, when my family turns their back on me, when nobody seems to understand or care, He is my shoulder on which to cry on and my resting place along this narrow highway. He knows my every need, every hurt, every disappointment, my pain and sorrows, my deepest thoughts and innermost feelings. He wipes away my every tear and His tender touch assures me that everything will be alright. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, even though hope is lost and the battle almost seeing defeat, I will fear nothing for He is with me. I know that He is able to carry me through everything on the wings of His love. I shall persevere on with Him by my side for I have learned that adversities are an essential part of life. They are like puddles, obstructions that prevent us from moving on; But on the other hand, these puddles can be opportunities, guiding you on where to step in this long road of life. After all, we can never learn to be brave or patient if there were only joy in the world. Happiness lies for those who cry, those who hurt, those who've searched and those who've tried for only they can appreciate the importance of people who have touched their lives.
Many people will walk in and out of your life but only true friend will leave footprints in your heart. And as I near the end my life, when the race has been won and my destiny fulfilled, I will look back on the paths I have passed and surely, I will find two sets of footprints in the sand, one belonging to me and the other to my faithful companion. How can I imagine a life without Him. It would be so empty, so worthless and without meaning for He's the very purpose and destiny of my life. I have dedicated my life to Him and I will follow Him all the rest of my days. Destiny is not a matter of chance, it is a matter of choice; It is not something to be waited for, but something to achieve. I shall have no regrets for this choice I have made, for the roads I have chosen even though they were not the easy ones because the highest reward for a man's trials is not what He gets for it but rather what He becomes of it. I have endured hardship and persecution, but He has made my trip worthwhile I have lived my life to the fullest because I have made each day count by living for Him and Him alone. As long as we have memories, yesterday remains; As long as we have hope, tomorrow awaits; As long as we have friendship, each day is never a waste. And as I close my eyes and breathe my last, I shall be smiling for I know that finally, I will be Him, eternally, forevermore by His side, my King, my Savior, my Lord and my Friend, Jesus Christ.

Nicholas Chan

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