What is it about old friends? There is an extraordinary comfort found in the presence of those with whom you’ve walked a significant portion of life’s road, who’ve cheered you on when you reach the desired destinations, and offered strength and support when you’ve hit potholes, and suffered long detours, instead.

I thought about all those times, last night, as I sat, in the sweet familiarity of the kitchen of our friends of 28 years, Mike and Janie. We’ve all watched each other change and grow, they being just far enough ahead of us to be the finest mentors.

Here, the morning after great food and more laughter than I’ve enjoyed in a good long while, I’m heading back home from the visit with a thankful heart.

This life comes with a Travel Guide, if you keep your Bible handy, but it doesn’t come with a map. We have no idea what twists and turns are in the road ahead. So, my thanks are being lifted up for the gift of traveling companions – especially the ones in it for the long haul – one of the sweetest mercies handed down to us in this life.

“A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” Proverbs 18:24 ESV

“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 ESV

“Iron sharpens iron and one man sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17 ESV