Thursday, September 23, 2010

Day 40

Today I met Connie at the grocery store. She was laughing at my daughter. To be fair, so was I. She was talking gibberish and then asking if whatever she'd just requested was permissible. She does this occasionally. It normally goes something like this, "Skampatowa feega nosdo rejama michta nobba doo, OK Daddy?" This reminded Connie of her granddaughter. We talked a bit about children and family and getting old. What was remarkable wasn't what we talked about, but where we were talking. This whole conversation took place outside my van as I was getting my little girl in her car seat. Connie was in the car next to us with the window down. Maybe I'm easily overwhelmed, but I was surprised she would talk to a complete stranger from her car. To me, that puts her in a pretty vulnerable position inasmuch as a car offers security. Yet here she was, chatting with me instead of resting in her comfortable, secure, quiet vehicle.

I love it when people open up. I know that leaving oneself vulnerable is a dangerous habit, but to a degree, its what all Christians are called to do. I'm not saying that we should be doormats, or that we should trust every person we meet.  All I mean is that Jesus told us to love people, even our enemies. That takes a lot more vulnerability than many of us are comfortable with. He also told us to be wise in our interactions. I think that's a lot of what I'm learning through this project; what it looks like to be loving and wise. I kind of suck at it right now. I tend to be overly vulnerable in the name of love, or overly cut off under the guise of wisdom. We'll see if I can strike a better balance in the coming months.

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