After reading SEVERAL books that stress the importance of community, I have decided that I want to wade into an unknown world for myself and my family. I want to have people around our table, A LOT.
Bread & Wine by Shauna Neiquist was probably the book that put that idea into true motion for me. It’s her thing, people around her table. I am a little jealous of that. Then I listened to her on Jamie Ivey’s The Happy Hour and realized that she means, like, every night. I’m sorry, what?!?! Every night?!? A different group or family over for dinner all the time. They’re sharing stories and growing and sharing life.
Every night does not work for our family at all because I work three nights a week. Because of this, we value our quiet family time. I’m an introvert, I need some quiet to refuel. However, last week, we had families in our home twice, three times if you count Spencer’s friend that ate dinner on his birthday (my baby’s 5!). I loved every minute of it! The first family was one for which our college small group had done a fundraiser. They came and sat and we heard their stories. I loved every minute of that only regretting that we didn’t eat together. Food brings people closer. There’s something about a table. Friday night, we hosted a local family that is much like us in that they aren’t from this tiny town. Making friends here is hard and you are often only close to the people that you work with everyday. They’ve lived all over, and it was good to get to know them and all their life experiences. We have a lot of the same views, and turns out, she’s a big reader, so we were basically born to be friends.
So now, I’m looking at this calendar and I need baseball and softball season to hurry up and end so that more days in my week can open up for more people to come over. This week, we are hosting our church small group. I’m stoked. I’ll be talking about this more and more as it progresses. I hope that I can encourage someone somewhere out there to open up to a community of people. Let them in, let them love you, love them back. It really does feel good. Especially if you’re anything like me and social media has given you a false sense of community for a long time. Moving to new places is hard. It takes time to settle in. You have to find your people and that’s no small task. A little hint, they won’t come to you most of the time. You have to go find them. That sucks, and I’m sorry if I’m the one not coming to you. I’ve been there. But this is your encouragement post. Get out there and be the one to make the first move. Welcome some new folks into your home. I highly doubt you’ll regret it.
Other books that speak to community:
For the Love by Jen Hatmaker–another life changer, HIGHLY recommend this!
Giddy Up, Eunice by Sophie Hudson–haven’t actually read this yet, but dying to do so.
Women are Scary by Melanie Dale–again, haven’t read it, but it’s ON THE LIST
Looking for Lovely by Annie Downs– the last few chapters
The Art of Neighboring by Jay Pathak–a friend has read this and recommended it
I want to hear more. I want to hear your stories and experiences. It’s my new and old favorite thing. I want to know how you did it when you moved somewhere new. I want to know how you welcome the newbies. I want to know what works and what fails. And mostly, I want to know how this has affected you and how you do life. I can’t wait to hear!