The lone water droplet sat on the shore looking out towards the ocean as it made its daily retreat. The receding waters danced and splashed with joy as they slowly left the shallows of the rocky beach. It was an amazing sight to behold, and started him thinking. Prior to today he had been a mere rain drop, falling from the heavens alone, his sole purpose on reaching maturity fulfilled the moment he landed. He had never known what it was to be with other water droplets. And yet his landing spot had been a damp rock during high tide. For a few short hours of his brief existence he had known what it was like to be surrounded by water droplets like him. He had known what it was to belong.
But then the tide had turned.
The receding waters danced and splashed with joy as they slowly left the shallows of the rocky beach, but he was left behind. There had been no invitation, no suggestion that he should follow, and indeed his destiny had always been to land here on this rock. Local fauna had already expressed gratitude at his lack of saltiness and the way that he would be able to serve them.
It was never the same as fellowship, but it was where he was. Whereas before he had never known loneliness existed, now he felt it stronger than ever. So he turned his back on the lifestyle he had glimpsed for one moment, began to bury the memories of time spent together, and began his new servant life.
It would be easy from this analogy to conclude that the author suffers from loneliness, which is true. It would also seem to be apparent that loneliness is now his choice, which is false. In fact, the importance of finding community, of finding and developing strong friendships, of being held accountable to those we trust most, is still utmost in his mind.
In previous blog entries I’ve written about the importance of finding community and the benefits that it can bring, and I still believe that with all my heart. But sometimes our community changes, people leave or move on, or events occurs that create barriers where previously there were none, and when that happens it is important to make a choice – to stay and wait or to go and seek.
But whatever happens, I commit to not being the lone water droplet, because humans are designed to live in community. CS Lewis says: “Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art…. It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things which give value to survival.”
To live a full life is to live in community, sharing experiences and building memories, forming personal connections that will never be lost.