Kim stared at the empty chair beside her. Tears flowed down her cheeks and dropped to the floor.

How could she be gone?

The laughter from the next cubicle invaded her space and she clenched her jaw. How could they be so chipper when one of their own was no longer with them?

The nerve.

Kim thought of the last conversation she had with her friend.

“See you at movie night. I’ll be there with bells on,” she had said.

Kim leaned back and stared at the ceiling.

Why didn’t I tell her how much I cared?

Why didn’t I spend more time with her?

Why? Why? Why?

She hung her head. Moments later, a hand touched her shoulder. A friend with tears in her eyes.

They clung to each other—Kim was thankful to have a shoulder to cry on. Thankful to have a friend she could cherish.

Have you lost someone close to you recently? A friend? A family member?

This week my department at work lost a dear retired co-worker. We all felt the shock. We walked around numb like zombies not sure where to turn next.

Sandi was an amazing woman. She had a contagious smile. She cherished her family and friends. She loved her dog like a child. I enjoyed being around her. We talked about the TV shows we watched, movies, vacations—just about anything. I will miss catching up with her at movie nights.

This loss made me think of something that has been on my heart lately. Why don’t we cherish those around us? Do we take our family, friends, spouses, neighbours for granted?

I know a judge would slam the gavel and sentence me guilty.

Why is it so hard for us to tell the person next to us we care? Are we scared of getting hurt? Looking silly?

I don’t have the answer. I just know we need to love each other. If we cherished those in our lives, I believe God would smile down upon us. That’s what He would want. After all, He commanded us to “love one another.”

Valentine’s Day is tomorrow. A perfect time to tell someone you love them. Will you do it? I’m going to.

Cherish them. Go ahead and give them a hug. I promise—they won’t bite.

John 13:34 (NIV)

A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.

Psalms 91:4 (NIV)

He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.

Sandi’s (seated) retirement picture

P.S. Sandi, we love you and will miss you dearly.

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