This is me my junior year in high school. I sat with Tonia every day at lunch, and shared a locker with her for 4 years. The memory of her laughter and smile still warm my heart. Our lives were so very different, but we loved each other a lot and stuck it out through some very hard times.
Her life was hard. She suffered more than any high school girl should. Her home life was full of sadness and joy like anyone’s, but for her, a lot more sadness.
I gave my life to Jesus wholeheartedly my Freshman year of high school. I have the funniest memory of walking into my school counselors office the day we were supposed to pick up our schedules, and I saw Tonia sitting there looking small, but spunky. I didn’t know her, but the friendship that started in that chance meeting in our school counselors office lasted all 4 years of the drama that goes with high school, and beyond. Tonia even turned my hair green once in a bleach blonde turned ash blonde incident. It’s one of my best high school memories.
We’ve kept a sort of loose touch over the years, her life going in one direction, mine in another.
There are few people on the planet I have loved as dearly as this girl. I think she knows it, I hope she knows it. I tried to tell her again and again of the love of Jesus waiting for her to receive. I tried to tell her in my high school way of how dedicated I was to seeing her find her purpose in life and the depths of my love and care for her. I don’t think she ever really knew. I hope she did. I hope she does now.
I heard tragic news about my friend this week. She was driving a car that was involved in an accident that killed her passenger. All the newspapers and I can find say, “she is in critical care”. I’m trying all kinds of ways to get to her, to let her know I still lover her. I still care, that Jesus still has a purpose for her. Pray for my friend today. She really needs it.