Yesterday our church went out and served in our community. Its one of my favorite days of the year. We don’t meet on Sunday on May 3rd. We instead go and find different ways to bless and serve some schools and parks around us with no strings attached. (Here is a link to a video I made recapping the day.) jpmckenney.wistia.com/medias/6qlecglngg
As I looked around and saw so many new faces serving, I also was painfully aware of how many weren’t there. Families that had moved, or fallen apart, or were no longer a part of the community. Its not just church. Its life. Work relationships, family relationships, change. And its painful. People you loved who for one reason or another are no longer around. And at times it discourages me because true, lasting community can feel like grasping at the wind.
And so the temptation is to withdraw. To isolate so that there is no more pain of separation. To let the fear of the unknown keep me from connecting.
But I won’t. Because some times it does stick. Sometimes relationships do make the long haul against all odds. I’m about to celebrate 20 years with my wife Allison.
I met my friend Ace in 7th grade. Today I am 41, and we texted one another how grateful we are for our friendship.
Sometimes even if you are only around someone for a short amount of time, you can mutually bless one another for the rest of your lives. Like my friend Mitch, who lives in California but who brings a smile to my face at just the mention of his name for his example of being a father and a husband and how he made me a better man today.
And because of examples like that, I face my fear constantly of relationships, and keep myself open to making more. The alternative may be safe, but it is also empty and dull.