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Friends are Friends Forever

I work with a team of educators in an elementary school. We know each other very well. We are well aware of each others' distinct personalities, insecurities, and talents. We have different backgrounds, opinions, and aren't always on 'the same page' when it comes to how the world's problems should be solved. Despite our differences, we have respect for each other and compassion for one another. It can be difficult working day in and day out with the same people. We know all of each other's weaknesses and struggles. However, work relationships can be one of the most rewarding relationships of your life. My co-workers have become my friends. We often pray with and for each other. A week doesn't go by that someone doesn't ask for prayer. We have mourned at funerals with those who have lost loved ones, and gathered in empty classrooms to pray for our families and students. If a co-worker is struggling, whether at home or school with a particular dilemma, our team immediately lifts them up in prayer and encourages them. Ephesians 4:29 says, " Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such that is good for building up, as it fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear". Hebrews 10:24-25 "And let us consider how we can spur on one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another--and all the more as you see the day approaching". It's not always easy working side by side cohesively. We'd all like to have our own way and wish everyone thought the right way-- my way. Jesus taught us to put others first. Oh how often I need to remind myself of that truth.

One way my co-workers and I are brought close together is through laughter. We have found that if we don't take ourselves too seriously, we feel more connected to each other. Dressing up, singing, and dancing together for an assembly was one of the highlights of my teaching career. At lunch time, it is not uncommon to hear loud laughter wafting out of the room as we share our amusing antidotes. Laughing at ourselves and making time to enjoy our work brings about a sense of camaraderie. I am so thankful for my friends at work and consider them a gift from God. James 1:17 "Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows."

We live in an imperfect world and one that is broken. This is not our home, but while we live here, we can choose to enjoy our work and to appreciate our co-workers. While we aren't promised to be without trials, God has left us with many gifts. One of those gifts are the very people we work with on a day--to--day basis. I am so thankful for the people God has placed on my path. My prayer is that I never take them for granted and that God would continue to bless our friendships.

Prayer: Heavenly Father thank you for those you have surrounded me with in my workplace. Bless my co-workers and their families. Father, may our words always be pleasing to you. May we encourage and lift each other up as we work side by side. Help us to maintain cohesive relationships. Holy Spirit remind us that we are working for our Father in Heaven and that we should only do our best work. Thank you for the opportunities you have set before me and those I do life with everyday. Amen

Bible Verses:

John 15: 12-13 "My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this than he lay down his life for one's friends."

Proverbs 27:17 "As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another."

1 Thessalonians 5:11 "Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing."

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