February 29

Written by Bill Grandi on February 29th, 2024

LEAP YEAR!

The ways of God never cease to amaze me. Who would have known-other than Him-that one of the more horrific times in my life would lead to a friendship that is like “brothers from another mother.”

In November of 2016 I was hit by a hit-n-run driver while riding my bike. It was in the afternoon; I was wearing bright clothing; and I was hit by an SUV’s rearview mirror on my left hip. While I laid in the middle of the highway, I watched as the driver took off, never once putting on a brake or to see if I was okay. (Yeah, I believe it was intentional. There are some idiots on the road. Ask the guy who got so close to me I felt his breeze on my leg then gave me the finger). Anyway…

I had had a little interest in an organization called 3 Feet Please but after this incident my interest ramped up. Its goal is to advocate for 3 feet of distance between car and rider and make it a law. Little did I know the leadership of 3FP had changed from a man in Florida to a man in Arizona. Dave and I struck up an email conversation which graduated to more regular contact. Then one weekend he came to visit. He spent 2 winters in Maine to get out of the heat in AZ (yeah he needs his head examined 🙂 ) and stopped to visit on his way through. There have been multiple other visits, emails, texts, and phone calls until our trip to AZ last week was the icing on the cake.

Both our wives agree we are too much alike in many respects. While I am an extreme extrovert and he’s an introvert whose brain never stops, he knows so much more about certain areas of “life” than me. Our wives would say we are “brothers from another mother.”

As we visited I had decided on the flight there to take an aggressive approach to reading Proverbs. Normally, I take one chapter a day every other month. This time I decided to read the whole book while on vacation, which meant 4 chapters a day. As a result, I read two Scriptures that particularly meant more to me. “There are ‘friends’ who destroy each other, but a real friend sticks closer than a brother.” (Pr. 18:24). The other says, “As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.” (Pr. 27:17).

True friendship is hard to find, let alone experience, especially for men. At 71 I can look back and see men I’ve been friends with. That tends to be characteristic of my personality. Except for one, they have all come and gone…more like acquaintances. This friendship with Dave is special. Sort of like David and Jonathan’s. We are good for each other.  Our wives agree-even though we can be a bit wacky and off the wall.

I thank God for a much-needed and much-appreciated friendship. Do you have one you can lean on?

 

8 Comments so far ↓

  1. gail says:

    Friendships like that are such a blessing. I am happy that God has a blessed me with some friends that I know give me love,honesty,grace,and a place I can always go for whatever I need.True treasures.

  2. Ed Damas says:

    I wish I had. But most of those “friends” have moved along. I have one that we used to talk and fellowship on a regular basis, but he’s been swallowed up by work and life issues.
    Thank God I have a sister in Christ whom I fellowship almost every day, even though she lives on the east coast.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      It’s important, Ed, that we have someone we can talk and share with. Even if it someone on the east coast. Stay in touch and be honest.

  3. I’m so happy to hear that you’ve found this once-in-a-lifetime friend in Dave, Bill. I have so many people I consider friends, but not on the level you describe here. If spouses count, my best friend in this world is Danny. I can easily share everything with him.
    Blessings!

  4. Linda Stoll says:

    oh i remember this traumatic time in your life, Bill. that you invited us into it hopefully gave you encouragement along the way.

    so many friends have come and gone over the years. and all i can think is that there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

    Jesus. only Jesus.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      It was definitely a “different” time in my life. The weight loss of 48 pounds, looking like a scarecrow after lifting weights for years, and the lack of energy are things I prefer to forget. But not the well wishes of friends. And yes, Jesus, only Jesus.

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