Friendships grow more important with every passing year. Gone are the fair-weather relationships of our teen days.
As we age, we begin recognize the most special things in life. Love is no longer a word we use to describe our favorite movie.
Instead it becomes the single, life-giving thing we seek out daily. We soon learn the material things of this world don’t matter, as long as we have our loved ones close by our side.
This becomes especially true during the holiday season. All the gifts and glitz can’t fill us the way a deep conversation with a close friend can.
Amanda Burnard of Theresa, New York, knows this better than anyone. When this mom and schoolteacher learned she had breast cancer, her friends and family banded together around her.
The diagnosis came in October 2018. “It was just shock,” Amanda’s close friend, Shelby Honeywell, told WWNYTV. “It’s something that you hear about… but it never had happened to anyone in our group.”
With the holidays coming, Amanda’s friends wanted to do something special. Something that would encourage their friend during her fight against cancer and bring her some joy during the season.
And this is how “Amanda’s Guiding Lights” came about. “I remember the first one that I actually saw,” Amanda shared with WWNYTV.
“It was one of my best friends Shannon’s and I drove by her house and I saw ‘faith’ and I thought, ‘Did she do that special for me?'”
She did, but Shannon wasn’t the only one writing out messages of encouragement using Christmas lights. Several others got on board as well.
Soon the lit-up messages could be seen throughout her community. “I’ve been struggling for days with how I could possibly express how touched I continue to be by all of the love and support I feel,” Amanda wrote on Facebook. “If I could write thank you in the stars, I would!”
The light messages aren’t for local community members alone. Amanda’s friends have started a Facebook group in hopes to spread the joy even more.
If you’d like to create a message for Amanda with your lights this holiday season, you can snap a photo and post it to the group — Amanda’s Guiding Lights.
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