I wanted to share just a bit more on this topic. 1. because it hurts a lot 2. because I think it can be healed
If it wasn't very clear from yesterday's post, I am not good at really living life, sharing life together, in community. (in the past I was just downright bad at it) I think the gospel has so much power when it exists outside the church, in life, in those moments where our fallen nature looms big & our brokenness, our flaws are so obvious.
My pastor likes to joke, that 'if you don't come to church because of the hypocrites, that's ok, there's always room for one more.' We are all hypocrites. None of us is without sin, and therefore; none perfectly living this life.
Being known is a scary thing. It's vulnerable. It exposes us who like to hide behind the mask of pride. "I'm smart, funny, well-travelled, educated, not bad to look at, ((look at me!!))" As I've grown up, I've come to really dislike that 'me-monster' that comes out. Y'all remember Brian Regan, the comedian? He did a really funny bit about the 'me-monster'. I'm grateful that those 'accolades' don't apply to me, and are pretty laughable at this point in my life. I'm seriously laughing out loud.
Letting people in, loving people, sets you up for pain. If you love a lot, you may end up hurting over those same relationships. As a mom of little kids, I feel this in a whole new way as my kids age. I love them fiercely, but they have very little room, very little freedom at this age to truly hurt me. I know those days are coming... (!) But how much did my Lord suffer for me.!.?? He gave, all.of.it. & he knew pain, more than I'll ever know. because he loved me.
In friendship, in fellowship, can I really see people differently? Not just as passers-by for this time being, but really see the people? hear their hearts? Even people who are different from me? Not everyone may be a kindred spirit, best friend material. But I am called to love, more than just those who are easy to love. those who are hard to love & even enemies.
It doesn't help that I'm really not good with names. When I taught high school, I would tell the kids, and I would try hard, but it took me weeks (and weeks for some) to learn their names. I need a meaningful connection, or I never get it - it doesn't ever stick.
We have a community that we exist in, right now. I need to be a part, give more of myself & remember that I NEED them too. Try not to get my feelings hurt when my 'serves' don't get returned, so to speak. I don't have thick skin, but I'm going to ask the Lord to stretch me & make me better for those I am around. I don't really want to meet any more new people (and the idea makes me a bit queasy- me who has lived 5 homes in 7 years of marriage), but if our paths cross, you should matter to me. You.do.matter.
Lord, teach me how to give & serve & love those in my life. Help me to live that verse, to share your gospel & my life as well - to be delighted to give it away. Thank you Lord for giving me new eyes to see.