Beth has a past. A rough, rocky past.
Drugs. Prostitution. Living on the street.
Not just a short past. A long history.
Beth was in an accident which left her with some brain damage. As if things couldn’t get worse.
I hardly know Beth.
But I know all about her struggles because Beth has a mother.
I know Beth’s mother. I know her well.
I have watched her struggle for years to find a balance. That fine knife’s edge balances between serving her daughter’s needs without enabling her addictions.
I have stood and watched this amazing woman and mother. I have watched her be the hands of God as she serves. I have seen her pray for success and find failure over and over again. I have watched her return to the battle when I know she is too weary to fight.
I have watched from the sidelines.
Every now and again, Beth’s mother needs some support. A kind word, a chance to cry and be honest.
I do this for her. And then I go back to my life.
What I do is cheap. It is literally the least I can do. I provide an hour of my time and comfort here or there.
I cheer her on and toss her back into the battle. Then I take my seat on the sidelines and watch some more.
But I still do this.
Because I have also fought a battle or two in my life.
Different arena. Different fight.
I, too, have battle scars.
I know how important that cheering section can be. Just when I felt I had nothing left to give, when I reached my end, someone came into the arena at the edge. They hugged me, cried with me, and even pushed me back in. They can’t fight my fight. Just as I can’t fight theirs.
These faces hover in my memory.
I see in them, not just the face of my friends, but the face of Jesus. His light shines through them.
I know when I next have a battle I will have these God given encouragers at my side. They have always been there when I needed them.
So why do I continue to cheer my friend?
Cause God calls me to serve her as she would serve me too.