Someone asked me recently what the best thing about living in Nashville was so far. My answer? The people.
I have found more community here in two months than I have ever had in my life. There are people here, all of whom I’ve known less than a year, who know more about me than some of my family and friends I’ve had for years. Now I’ll admit, part of that is on me. I am in a season of surrendering and that includes my fear of trusting people. When you surrender that community happens much more easily.
But, even beyond that, there is something different about the people here. I noticed it when I spent some time here in April and met some “locals.” In those few days I told my story more times than I ever had…and to complete strangers. The people here make it nearly impossible to hide…at least the community that God has dropped me into.
They get what it means to hold one another accountable, to encourage, to support, to challenge, to love, to risk, to dream…they get it means to be the church.
In a day when 20-somethings, and even 30-somethings, get a bad rap, I’m honored to do life with 20 and 30 somethings who love God and love people. They each do it in their own unique way, but that common thread comes through loud and clear. Nashville, I hope you know how blessed you are with these people!
As fall really settles in with the crisp cool air I start thinking about traditions, family rituals…those things that make you feel all warm and cozy inside…the cheesy side of life :)
“Cultures grow on the vine of tradition.” – Jonah Goldberg
Yes, the sentimental me loved the “take comfort in rituals” theme at Starbucks this fall :)
What rituals do you love?
I’ll be completely candid and honest, one of my biggest twitter pet peeves is all of the “name dropping” that seems to happen. In fact, as a result I’ve gotten to the point of rarely tagging people in my tweets because I don’t want be lumped in with the name droppers.
But, I’ve been thinking this week about the difference between name dropping and “friend dropping” or “someone you believe in dropping.” I had the opportunity to meet some incredible people this week who are new friends and people I believe in. But, if you looked at my tweets from the last couple of days you wouldn’t have any idea who any of those incredible people were. And honestly, that makes me a bit sad because I want the world to know about those people. They are genuine, influential, encouraging, relationship building, servant hearted, Jesus loving dreamers. They are the kind of people that give me hope for the world and for the Church.
So, I’m actively struggling to find a balance. A balance between too many names and not enough names. A balance of the difference between a name and a friend or someone I believe in. And all of that makes me wonder if what I think is “name dropping” is often just people who are excited to talk about their friends and people they believe in.
I was talking with a friend the other day and they shared a story of affirmation they had received for something they had created. Now, you may be thinking “how arrogant.” But the truth is, it wasn’t like that at all. I was more than happy to listen to the story and to celebrate with my friend for a job well done.
Personally, I love to celebrate a job well done with people, like my friend, whose hearts are in the right place and who “get it” because it’s not just a celebration of them and their skills but also, and maybe more so, a celebration of how God is using them and their skills for His purpose. And that…seeing God living and active in the lives of His people…is something that, for me, never gets old.
Sometimes I wonder if there would be fewer people wrestling and fighting for affirmation in unhealthy ways if we as the church learned to affirm one another more often. We seem to be okay with the idea of “encouraging” because we put it in the box related to feelings and the heart. But, we seem to struggle with encouraging or affirming people’s skills and work. We’re afraid that if we do they will become prideful because of it or that we are taking away all of the glory from God. But, I don’t believe either of those has to be the case.
Thoughts? When was the last time you poured out some words of affirmation on someone?
On Saturday I had lunch with a friend who I met because of a “mutual friend” on Facebook and a Facebook #fail.
Saturday night I went out with my roommates whom I found on Craigslist.
Sunday morning I went to church…a church that I call a home…a church that I ended up at because of a friendship that developed several states away via Twitter.
We can criticize all we want, and yes, we need to remember that technology and social media are simply tools. But, if we slow down enough to see it, at the heart of it all is people and relationships. That is why I love technology.
Why do you love technology?