Reflecting twenty nineteen – Part V


I have written extensively on the events that occurred in November and so I shall not repeat it here. Rather I want to reflect something really important – the gift of friendships that kept both wifey and me alive and enabled us to cope during this tumultuous period.

We were deeply affected, both emotionally and mentally as well as physically from the events that unfolded during November. Wifey and I were pretty much beat. We felt lost and confused – what do we do now? With the major house renovation in the background and coping with the challenges of putting up with my in-laws, we were just tired from it all. By the time December rolled on, I found it too difficult to continue staying motivated at work. I felt like a failure (even though I was one of the best performing managers in my department) and it was difficult for me to lift myself up.

Fortunately, we had very good friends – generous friends who opened their homes to us and comforted us with their hospitality and genuine concern. To me, that was a huge eye-opener. I had never experienced the warmth and kindness of my friends at such deep and intimate levels in such a long time. I had grown over the years to be self-dependent on managing my own needs and occasionally supporting those around me.

It was truly a humbling experience to go through this. I felt as though God was teaching me an important lesson going into 2020 – that friendships are important and run deeper than would I had always assumed it to be.

It also taught me an invaluable lesson on the gift and importance of hospitality – that I too need to be generous with what I have and share them to those in need in a deeper and more purposeful way. Typically in the past, I have always been more of a reserved person. I didn’t like owing anyone anything and so, this experience has really forced me to think about matters I wouldn’t necessarily have thought about – the gift and importance of friendship and the true power of generosity.

It is definitely a beautiful way to end the year in some ways. Going through what we went through over the last few months did hurt and it continues to hurt at times, especially when things get difficult. But it also calls for us, for me, to be mentally stronger, to be more reliant on my faith and also to allow myself to be supported by those who do care for me, even though I may not initially reciprocate it that way first.

St Josemaria often said that the call to holiness, that to be a saint, one needs to often forget himself and sacrifice himself for others. I guess I got to see it firsthand in the interactions and support I had from those who came to support wifey and me during these difficult times.

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By Martin


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