After 3D the other day, someone stopped me while I was putting away my chair and said, "Thanks. You were the only person who was smiling at me while I was talking in front of everyone." And it just made me realize how easy it is to make someone's day. If sitting there with a goofy look on my face can be encouraging, putting purpose into my actions could be even greater.
I've been thinking a lot about what to do with my time this summer. I mean, 4 months is a REALLY long time, and I don't intend to waste it.
I have a lot of people to catch up with, like high school friends, church people that I haven't sat down with for a while, and a bunch of other people from the other parts of my life that don't fall into those two categories who I'm just dying to see. I have a summer of Starbucks dates, food adventures, lunches, dinners, drinks, and shopping trips ahead of me - all with people that I'm completely comfortable with.
But what I've noticed lately is that I've had a lot of opportunities to love people that I'm not so comfortable with - whether it be people I don't know that well, people who are a bit difficult to love, people who I've heard not-so-great rumours about, and people who I've even done some gossiping about. And the thing about love is that it often goes hand-in-hand with a bit of discomfort.
It's easy for me to make plans with my friends and be real with people who generally think the same way I do, but it's often the difficult things that I'm called to do.
I've actually asked God quite a few times to give me an opportunity to go on a missions trip, like to Africa or Peru, because I know that I would learn a lot, see a lot, see Him a lot, and grow a lot. I'm almost jealous when I hear the stories that people tell when they come back about what God's doing across the ocean, about how their hearts broke, about how their capacity to love expanded, and about the relationships they built. I want to build a well for some thirsty children. I want to learn how to love. I want to help someone too.
But I already know why the right opportunity has never come up. I don't think it's because I want to go for selfish reasons or because He doesn't need me or whatever. It's because I know I don't need to look very far to love people. I think it's because He's telling me that there are people that need me to love them right here and right now. And I don't have to go far away to care for people when there are things going on right under my nose, even as close as my very own church, that I need to put some heart into.
This is a very jumbled blog post, and I have no idea where I'm going with this so I don't know how to end it. I think it's time for bed.