The chair beneath me, perfectly curated for the room
My legs pressing into the table’s edge as I balance my chin upon my knees
This is a table for love
A table built long and deep
With room for a dozen perfectly curated chairs
I lean forward
My forehead resting on the varnished wood
Tears flow now, warring with the patterns in the grain
This table is empty
No heavy dishes mar the surface
No red wine circles blur white fabric
The loss of what could be fills my stomach
The questions of loneliness roll with no answers
This is a table for sharing
Simple fare prepared by friends
Conversations whirring long into the night
I am confused
Searching memories for indications of trouble
I scour my thoughts for words gone wrong
Where meals with friends, make family
Where laughter shared fills the soul
Too big now for the empty room
Too empty now in this darkened space
Alone in my grief
Mourning your loss
Come back, please, to the table
Jesus, today we sit at your feet, feelings of loneliness and grief for lost friendships swirling around us.
We ask for comfort. We ask for healing of those relationships.
Lord, we confess that we may have been the ones to mistreat our friends. We may have been the ones to walk away or use unkind words. And if so, please guide us to integrity and making things right.
And, Lord, if it is our friends who have chosen to walk away, we ask that you would bless them and if it be your will, you would bring them back to us, giving us the chance to forgive and accept them back into our embrace.
Jesus, be with us as we prepare our tables to welcome each other. Bless our friendships. But in the meantime, bless our tears and our heartache as we mourn the loss of great friends.