I have a couple friends in my life who have recently broken some promises. Or, if they haven’t broken them, they simply haven’t fulfilled what I thought was implied by our friendship. I was kind of frustrated by these encounters.
But then last week I hung out with Brett’s band again. We’ve made it official, I’m the manager, I’m being told to find them some shows. It sort of makes me smirk, this is how my mum got started in ministry: she did the schedule and booking for the music group my dad sang in with Campus Crusade. It’s amusing because it is also my own sort of [accidental] ministry: loving on people whose lives are seriously messed up.
While I was sitting at Old Chicago, munching on Sicilian Rolls that I bought for us (and which I really couldn’t afford), I was sort of irritated with some of these friends. I was texting under the table, and then, Kevin leaned over the plate of Italian Nachos and sort of glared at me with those squinty eyes of his behind his thin wire glasses.
“Sara,” he said in a usually sweet voice that was bordering on an irritated tone, “you’re as bad as Brett. Stop texting.”
I nodded slowly. I said a friend was having a bad night, I was just trying to be available. But he was still crabby and he wasn’t going to take my excuses .So I shoved the phone back in my pocket and re-engaged with the group surrounding me.
I was doing the same thing that my friends are doing to me. I’m overly stimulated, with my fingers involved in too many things, and I’m trying to take care of so many people that I’m ignoring the people in front of me. I’m so plugged in, one might say.
A friend spoke of someone recently saying “he loves me well.”
What does it mean to love someone well?
I’m learning (or perhaps, re-learning) that God has designed us all to give and recieve love in different ways and that part of living in community means I need to learn what that looks like among my friends.
For Grahm, I call to invite him to things instead of texting. And I hate the phone.
For Kyle, I text incessantly.
For Liz, I have to plan long long long coffee dates for her to have plenty of time to come out of her shell.
For Ghena, I fold and put away laundry.
For my mum, I don’t head straight to the fridge upon my arrival at her home.
For Kelsie, we went on runs.
For Noel, I try to see her more than I see her dog though it’s easier to look Arthur in the eyes than it is to meet her gaze when I don’t know what to say.
And everyone else… I’m still figuring you out.
But I’m going to stop being so absorbed with everyone who isn’t around and focus on you when you’re standing in front of me and telling me you need to quit spice, or quit men, or quit life. promise. call me on it. (and tell me what you need)