Wishing to be friends is quick work, but friendship is a slow ripening fruit – Aristotele
Thirty years ago.
Three young women meet at a Biblestudy group for young mothers.
Friendship grows while babies in nappies crawl happily on the floor. Sometimes the Biblestudy hour becomes chaotic with the sounds of crying, laughing and even fighting babies and children.
They share their joys and sorrows. They laugh together, cry together, pray together and grow wiser and older together.
Through the terrible twos, nursery years, primary school and teenage storms they stay connected, supporting each other laughing and crying at the children’s growing up pains. Bonds are formed amongst the growing up children too, becoming lasting relationships.
Friendship grows on the tree of life and becomes a green fruit beautiful to look at but not ready to be picked and eaten yet.
The women become mature ladies, taking their place in society and contributing to their chosen careers, community and their marriages. Life brings sunny and rainy days even storms to be weathered.
Through the passing years the slowly ripening fruit of friendship is nurtured by the sunshine of companionship, the rain of giving, the food of time. Only under these circumstances will it become a ripe fruit to be picked and enjoyed later on.
Eventually the ladies reach a time where children have left home, married and had children of their own. Husbands retired and some passed away. Their faces, hair and bodies show the passing of time, but the easy companionship of the ripening friendship fruit grows sweeter.
Now they can enjoy the companionship, the interests shared, the burdens carried together, the laughs and the tears still to come.
Here they are the three friends in middle age enjoying thirty years of slow ripening friendship fruit.
Do you invest time and effort in the fruit of friendship? If not I encourage you to do so for without friends life is infinitely more difficult.