Thursday, February 7, 2008

Where's Your Mission Field?

This morning when I got up and let the dogs out I couldn't help but be in awe of just how beautiful the untouched snow looked laying on the ground and on the trees. As I looked out our back door just taking in the scene before me, seeing all that snow out there...and believe me the awe within was not because I am a big fan of the snow! But, I happen to just start looking around at the houses and there was a saddness that came over me. I had this feeling come over me about our old neighborhood. I missed it!
Mind you I have no regrets about our move. I know in my heart we are right where God has called us to be. There's just something different here, something I noticed immediatly after moving in.
You see in our old neighborhood we would all get together out front in the evenings and play games with the kids, talk and just be about each others lives. We always had our eyes out to help each other. Ironically, for each younger family that lived on our street there seemed to be an elderly person to look out for. We had Mary Lou to our left and the Taylor's had Mrs. O'Leary to their right, when they moved and Mike and Jean moved in, they kept an eye on her and Kim and John had the little blind man to their right, just can't remember his name right now! I do remember, he wasn't very nice, but we all helped him anyway. But, we were all connected! That's what's missing here, the connection. It's not due to the lack of trying and I can't say we don't know our neighbors at all. We know their names, we know what they do for a living, how many children they have and what car they drive, and we wave as we pass on the street. But for the most part, that's where it ends.'s not there. Not just with the adults either, it's in the kids too. I remember not long after we moved in standing out front with Libby, sometime in June right after the kids were let out of school for summer vacation. I stood there and just listened and there was almost absolute silence, and it was early in the afternoon. No sounds of children out playing, laughing or even arguing for that matter. Nothing but the sounds of birds in the air and the cars on the road. I found this abnormal somehow, so unlike where we had just moved from. After a year or so of being here I had to ask myself if it was me, was I not doing my part to connect with the families around me?
I had asked the mom across the street to go for a walk with me, I've stopped and spoke to people on my walks or tried to connect with those from the neighborhood that have come to my garage sales and I've gone to theirs, and we've had conversations that I thought were ice breakers and were going to make a difference. Then nothing, I see them again and they wave a hand and continue on with what their doing. At one point I was really beginning to take this personal,thinking maybe I was being stand offish. Although I know there is always room for improvment in ourselves, I don't believe that's it. I've spoke to others who live in similar surroundings. The word...detached...comes to mind. I think thats why this feels so...abnormal to me, and out of place. It's just not the way it's suppose to be. God created us with a need for each other, a need to connect, and not just on the surface. Relational accountability is spoken of in the word of God, it's a part of our being. Without connection there can be no relationship much less relational accountability. We are accountable to each other to keep a balance. I think that describes what I feel about the surroundings in which we live right balance. And it still feels as foreign to me as it did right after we moved in. The thought just accured to me about foreign missions.....this is my mission field! I do have a sense within of being on foreign ground.
Last night in our "Made to Count" group this is exactly what we spoke about, our ministry fields. Where are they and what do they look like? My answer to that is simply..... just look out your door!


Anonymous said...

I like that message alot.

Libby said...

That is so so true!

Samantha said...

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Oh by the way my name is Samantha