Saturday, September 12, 2009
I know...there's actually three chairs in the picture but only two of them got used this particular morning. I've been meeting with my pastor on a weekly basis. "Meeting" makes it sound more formal than it is, it's really just having coffee with Ken regularly. There's no agenda other than to intentionally be together. Ken tells me stories. He has a great capacity to remember the strange, hilarious details. He's lived an epic life...grew up on a Native reservation, worked hard in remote Alaska, all kinds of history of odd jobs and serving in church and now, a pastor for a small Bible fellowship. He's got a lot to talk about. I love to listen and he seems to enjoy listening to me too.
Sitting with Ken this week made me remember a scene I observed in the Native community we were working in this summer. Mua is a large Samoan who came to Canada through YWAM, married a native woman and they live, work and raise their family in native community near Victoria. Their house is an open door for the kids of the community. They often share food and time and not in a programed, "this is my time at work" kind of way but with sincerity and grace. Things are a little messy but it's ok.
There are little chairs in Mua's front yard and in the cool of the evening, they sit outside, water the plants, talk and laugh. I spied Mua and his son, two big guys, our first evening there, sitting and talking in these little chairs. What struck me was the way they were sitting, very close, eyes locked, intent on each others words. It looked as if to Mua, the only thing in the world was his son.
Everybody needs this. I need this. I need it from God. I need it from other men. I need it from those closest to me. Just the opportunity to sit with no agenda and be heard. I need to look up and see eyes that are only seeing me.
Everybody need this. And that means all the other people in my life...my wife, my kids, my friends and church family, the poor and lonely along the way, all need to look at me and see from me that they are important. They are heard. That someone is listening.
Oh, to drop the distractions, weed out the non-essentials and to remember that at the end of all things is God and people...the only thing that will last is these precious relationships. That means they are all that matter now.