On Tuesday night, Niels and I were at small group with our house church. In recent weeks, we've been focusing on the topic of Good News, and what it means to live out Christ's gospel in a practical way. We've been talking about the people in our lives...friends, family, co-workers, neighbors. Those who have been part of life for all of our lives, those who've moved or we've moved away from, and new friends.
Sometimes in conversations like this, I discover word to describe concepts that have been hidden just out of my mind's reach. On Tuesday, I found new words: Gates and Walls.
It's not always easy to connect with the people of lives. Sometimes physical distance creates a hurdle. Sometimes emotional distance create the block. At the same time, the people in our lives tend to come in groups: family, church friends, co-workers, fellow sports enthusiasts, etc.
On Tuesday, a friend shared a list with us, of friends and family with whom he'd like to more closely connect. The list was overwhelming, so he asked us for help getting started. As he spoke, I made a mental list of my own. I think we'd all like to be in the position of knowing that everyone we values, values us equally in return. Unfortunately, reality tends to look differently.
As I considered the groups in my life, I realized that some people are Gates and some are Walls. I tend to get down when the Walls don't open like Gates. I tend to underestimate the power of Gates to open the way to make new Gates. When overwhelmed by the relationships in our life, it seems that a good start is to go through the Gate.