I’ve just read a newspaper article by a man named John Mark Eberhart. It’s titled, “A Day
to Honor a Friend.” It concerns a buddy of his who had weaknesses…alcohol and drugs especially. Things his friend,
Greg, wanted to quit, but they had him and wouldn’t let him go.
I know the feeling of losing a lifelong buddy. My friend didn’t have those bad habits, but cancer got
him, and like Greg’s problem, it wouldn’t let go. And after years, I still miss Dick Martin. We were so close
that today, people might question it, but we were as straight as arrows, and I introduced him to a girl on a double date,
and they knew they were meant for each other. My wife and I had the honor of being at their 50th wedding anniversary celebration,
and a few years later, he was gone.
When friends are that close, habits are accepted, although they may be disheartening. And John Mark noted
that even with Greg’s problems, he loved God.
Yes, it’s possible. A person who doesn’t have a problem that has a body in its grip, has trouble
understanding this. But God loved Greg back. and only He can judge correctly. He was with Greg in the dark of night, after
his guitar and singing sessions with John, and after the duet was over.
God loves, even though he hates the ogres that get us in their clutches, usually in our foolish youth, and
never let go.
Greg lost the battle, but he didn’t lose his friend. And it may be that God saw even more than John
did, and welcomed him in, on the day Greg’s life on earth ended. I don’t know John Eberhart’s religious
belief, but as a Christian, I believe we’ll see and know friends from our days here. (I Corinthians 13:12). And we rest
in that assurance.