I’m in the privileged position of having friendships now that date back for over a decade. Not all of these friends are geographically located so that catching up with them is easy, but it’s always great when there’s a chance to try and catch up on what has happened in months and years passed.
It’s funny how things that seem painful at the time are actually really useful in ways that are impossible to tell until much later. I’d even forgotten about one particular situation until reminded about it over lunch recently. At the time, it all seemed hard to cope with, but looking back on it, I can see that almost everything I know about how to relate to people came about as a result of changes that took place since then.
Cryptic? I’m sure you can think of things that have taken place in your life that were unpleasant, but without them, you wouldn’t be the person you are today. At least it’s one way of understanding Romans 8:28.