My friend, Michael Keller said that the word community is an outdated term. He said that it was used in the past to refer to doing life with others. He said that nowadays people think that community is labor intense and takes too much effort.
My new life will not be about having a chic new apartment in the City. That costs too much. It’s that we have been growing green plants for a long time in our garden and it is time for us to grow people.
Real community is less a social thing and more about what social media leaves out, being known as we are. Our family is moving to be closer in proximity and being vulnerable enough to do life with others. The city can be crowded, cruel and big, isolating and lonely, competitive and snarky. What if we move in and try to celebrate community together and the life it breathes into us.
I am not an eloquent speaker. My ability to host gatherings has never been perfectly smooth affairs. I just know that many years ago when I moved to the City, before I was married, there were a few people who would visit me at my office on the upper west side of Manhattan during my lunch hour and bring me lunch, then welcome me into their home regularly for dinner and good discussion, accept me on good days and bad, and actually call me on the telephone to check in with me to “do life with me”.
We want to do that in our home. Imperfectly. With love. Humility. Kindness. And Grace.
How about peanut butter and jelly sandwiches with popcorn (you absolutely need the salted kind) and good conversation on a Sunday afternoon?