Mourning the death of a friendship

I confess the title is a bit dramatic, but it certainly feels like mourning a friend. A friend that seems farther and farther away; or at least, the hope of seeing that friend again as we once were seems distant and remote.

I dream about it.

The reunion.

The day when we can finally meet and straighten things out.

The last few months I’ve had vivid dreams about it, such that I’ve done double takes a few times when I see his comments on Facebook. Did we finally talk? Were we actually with mutual friends without awkward pretense?

I dream about it.

Finally a comment.

A public acknowledgment that we were once friends.

Every time I read about conflict. Deep, scarring, conflict. I think of him and those final months of our relationship. Did I light those bridges aflame? Would they have burned to ashes anyway? The tension then was surely high. There was no shortage of hurt and injury. We were wounded. Well. At least I was wounded. I tried to speak assuming health but the only person I was fooling was me. Could those final days have gone differently?

I dream about it.

I imagine it going differently.

That somehow we emerged from this conflict. Healed.

But the wounds are still open. Even when I think enough time has passed an unexpected word becomes the salt. That happened today in the reading of a devotional shared among friends. I still mourn that pride gets in the way. That it’s so easy to rationalize not tending to these wounds. There are other things to care about. Communities to love. People to pastor. Something. Anything. But reconciliation. Perhaps “This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer”

I dream about it.