You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father, I have made known to you.
Our eldest granddaughter, Virginia Rose, cannot recall a day in her life when the cat, Henry, wasn't a part of it. Even through several moves, the latest one being to South Carolina, Henry has been a constant and devoted companion to everyone in the family.
But especially, Virginia.
I remember the countless times I would travel to pick up Virginia to spend the weekend; she was always adamant about saying good-bye to Henry, assuring him that she would be back soon. I would always smile to myself as she talked to the cat, believing with all her heart that he understood every word she said. Didn't we all, as children, think our beloved pets could translate our sentiments in their hearts?
Recently, Virginia asks her mother to send me these photos, some of Henry lounging by himself, and some with her doting over him.
Virginia truly perceives Henry as a dear friend, someone who will listen to her, love her and console her when she is feeling uncertain or afraid. And I'm so grateful for this relationship, especially in these times of isolation due to the virus.
When the family moved to South Carolina, Virginia and her sister, Savannah, attended their new school for a mere week before all the schools were shut down. Hardly time to make any new friends!
So, for now, Henry is friend #1 in Virginia's life.
My prayer for her, and for her two sisters, is that the day will come when they will realize who the One Friend is that they can always count on in good times and bad.
The best friend anyone could ever have.