It often happened that an old-time sailing ship, exploring and trading in new lands, would find itself calmed in the doldrums just east of South America. A Spanish galleon would sit for days, and even weeks, baking in the torrid tropic sun just off the coast of what is now Brazil. With their ship unable to move in the windless sea, unable to reach land, and sometimes the supply of fresh water gone, the men were doomed to dehydration.
Sometimes a local vessel would drift near one of these pitiful ships. The appeal from the dying sailors was always the same: “Please, give us some of your water.” At this, the local seamen would deliver an amazing piece of information. They were sitting in the mouth of the mighty Amazon where it empties into the sea. This river is so vast that its water extends 200 miles out into the Atlantic.
Although they could not see land, the ship, and its crew that was dying of thirst, was adrift in freshwater. All they had to do was lower their buckets over the side. They believed themselves to be helplessly in need, but they were literally surrounded by exactly what they needed.
In the same way, many people think they can’t find good new friends. We are adrift in a sea of potential friends. And in our humanness, so many times when we feel lonely, and we think there is no one we can talk to, we are literally surrounded by that which we need.
There are strangers out there who are waiting to become our friends. There are wonderful people who are going to become so close to us, and we will become so close to them, that our lives will become new again because of the friendships we ignite.