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This story of friendship, caring and love, was sent to me by Trish. I believe it is truly a wonderful experience which hopefully will make others realize just how important it is to give of ourselves to others, and what a huge difference it can make in someone's life. Thanks, Trish!

I want to tell all about my friend, Catherine. Before I met her, I was bitter, angry and mistrusted everyone. The world was meant to hurt you. Love hurt. That was all I knew. I became an expert at pushing people away and keeping them away. It was safer that way as people would hurt you if you let them near your heart. I had no close friends and believe me, I wanted it that way. Then one day I met Catherine Rose Halliday. I am not sure what attracted me to her, but she had a quiet peace and confidence I know I wanted. So I took a chance and asked her out for something to eat. Over dinner I kept thinking what an amazing person she is and how at peace I felt with her, but I still kept telling myself, don't get close or she will hurt you because everyone does. We began to get together more and more, and while I got more comfortable with her, the fear was still so intense I took pains to push her away. I even asked her when she was going to reject me like everyone else does, but no, she never did. Instead she invited me to her church where for the first time I met God. And now I was really supposed to open my heart up to God, and that freaked me out. I panicked in church, and I would run or become short of breath and freak out. No only did God's love scare me badly, but also, the thought of letting other people in the church scared me insane. Get away, get away. I would be sick to my stomach and turn white as a sheet. Many times I cam close to fainting. Many times I told myself, that's it, I am not coming back. I had only one thing to hold onto...Catherine. Letting her that close to me scared me even more, but she was like my life preserver to a drowning man. Each time she would love me, accept me, and just stand by me. She stayed by me. I could not believe it. WOW! She never left. No matter how I reacted, she stayed. No matter how sick I got, she stayed and held my hand. She even gave me hugs when before I would never have let anyone do that. But she stayed. My God, she stayed! Slowly the walls are coming down and I still worry at times if she is going to leave, but when I fear the most, she is there more than ever. I push her away and she pushes back even stronger. The walls are coming down and she is the only person on the inside helping me take them down. She loves me. God loves me. In her I see God. I am not the same person as I was before I met her. You would not recognize me anymore. The fighter is gone, the bitterness is gone, the anger is gone. The person who saw herself as nothing more than an object is now loved and worthy of love. All I pray is, that I am half the person she sees me as.

Dear Lord,

Bless Catherine. I love her so. Keep her safe and protected and thank you for introducing us. May I be the blessing to her that she is to me. AMEN

I don't have quite the gift of words that maybe I want, but she is an "angel here on earth", and I know when I met her, it gave me what I have been looking for all my life. She gave me a never ending love. She is my best friend. TRISH

Trish also asked me to add the following:

Catherine also helped me with some past abuse issues to make me feel better about myself. When I came under HEAVY spiritual attacks, she was there, particularly at night when she would be me all the time...if you need to me, anytime, 24hours a day. She would say, "I would rather lose sleep than have a friend hurting, and not call". When home stress got too much, she gave me keys to her place to relax, my sanctuary. God, I could go on and on about her love. When I told her I was going to give up going to God, she hugged me and loved me more. I could go on and on and on, but she is an angel. Before I met her, asking or getting a hug was met with hostility, and never asked. Now with her, not only do I need them to live, like air, but, I even ask her for them. I hope she knows she is the only person I can say, "I love you", and know I will hear it back.