The Difference a Friend Can Make

It was probably just a week ago now that I was feeling quite anxious about Ezra, wondering, hoping, praying that he would begin to be more comfortable and less fearful in being at school. Up until that point I had been spending most of the day hanging around and trying my best to positively encourage him as he took small steps of independence.  Around this time from a small book on my bedside table called “Breath Prayers for Mothers” I was reminded of my need to pray for my children.  “Lift up your hands to him in prayer. Plead for your children” (Lam 2:19).  One week later I sense my prayers have been partially answered in a little boy named Gabriel (Gaby for short), Ezra’s new friend at school.  At the end of last week, in a moment of courage Ezra reached out and tried to get involved in the play of some other little boys in the playground and before I knew it he had a couple of boys excited about running across the small schoolyard to do some pretending. It was a little humurous since he was talking in English which i’m sure they weren’t understanding… but it didn’t seem to bother them or Ezra. Another connection later in the day was made, again with Gaby, over a mutual interest in pretending sticks were guns (oops, not an overly mcc thing to talk about) and by the next time Ezra needed to go in his classroom he was much more content and happy to go along, especially wanting to make sure he can sit beside his new buddy. Like I said.. the difference a friend can make. Now this isn’t to say Ezra still does not have some struggles – at times he’s not interested in joining the class, and his play is limited because he can’t really talk to his classmates, but there is a bit of a different spirit in him and today after missing school over a short fever he says he’s wanting to go to school tomorrow to see his friend again.

Now Ezra isn’t the only one who is being encouraged by some new friendships.  About a month ago I decided to persevere on a day when Rick was out of town and with my two kids in search for a Christmas Cookie bake sale.  While the cookies were yummy, what I also found was a young woman close to my age, an American whose parents have been missionaries here for 30 years, so yes essentially Mexico is her home.  This brief connection also lead to an invitation to a weekly playgroup at a local restaurant, and a baby shower I attended last weekend. Already I have been quite blessed by this small group of mostly extranjero women who have married Mexicans and are now living in San Cristobal. I have thought a few times, if I would have not gone to that bake sale I would have been missing out on a lot more than some good Christmas cookies! In this regard, I am reminded of something my brother in law encouraged/challenged me with once, you can’t just wait around hoping for things in your life, you need to be a part of making them happen (thanks Robere).  It is clear to me that God was involved in letting me see that tiny bake sale sign and prodding me not to say, ah forget it…as well I am also thankful for the courage he gave me, and the courage he gave Ezra to step out and experience the answers to prayer that he was desiring to provide.

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