Thursday, February 24, 2011

A Sharpened Community

I'm frustrated today because I don't have any new pictures. I hate publishing a blog post without photos. I guess it's because I'm such a visual person. Personally I have a hard time reading blogs that are text only even if the content is really interesting. What's that cliche'? 'A picture is worth a thousand words'? Why yes, yes it is.

Ho hum. A photo-less blog post. That is me today, but I hope you will read on anyway! I'll try to keep it short. :) So many thoughts are racing through my head today as I think over the last few days. Zach and I just had our 7th house guest since we moved to Charlotte. 

7th. 

And we've been here less than 2 months. AND we already have 4 more coming in the next month. (And double AND...Allie doesn't even count as a guest since this is her home too.)

I feel like I am perpetually washing the guest room bedding and bath towels and making no progress whatsoever keeping things clean. (Ah ha! I will go take pics of the guest room bedding! YES.)

polka dot sheets
city print duvet
center circle
felt pillow
I feel better now :)

So even though there's a bit more laundry, I adore having people in the house talking, laughing, eating, and reading the bible. People striving to figure out what the heck it means to really live like Christ and lead a church.  People who want more of Christ in their heart and less of themselves. People who encourage one another and love each other recklessly. 

I love our community. And I love hosting people in our home. 

I love cooking for others and providing a space people can be comfortable and enjoy each other's company. Seriously, if it were up to me I'd spend all my time just cooking and baking for other people and finding other creative ways to nurture relationships. This new community is such a massive blessing in our life. Zach and I were so hungry for this type of community and it is a joy to extend love through hospitality to those around us.  In addition to people staying at our house over night or friends just coming over, we have been invited to other homes for meals or just fellowship more times than I can count. There's something so special and life-giving about really doing life with other people on a very regular basis. 

Our culture has gotten so far away from this due to our independent lifestyles and values. If you've ever read even just the preface of the book "Outliers" you know how drastically your community shapes who you are and effects every part of your being, even your health.  Eventually whatever you surround yourself with is what you become no matter how strong of a person you think you are.

I have seen evidence of this truth first hand since our move to Charlotte. We were so obviously designed for community! Without community people tend to wither away and lose effectiveness. With it we flourish and thrive, feel energized and encouraged to continue seeking God and a life filled with His true spirit. There is immense truth in

Proverbs 27:17... "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another."

I am so thankful God has provided this need for us here in Charlotte with such dear friends and fellow ministry workers (and kindred spirits outside of Charlotte as well!). It definitely has challenged, refined, and changed us both in a myriad of ways already. 

Thank you sweet friends for your love, your passion for sharing biblical truth, and your constant pursuit of something greater than yourself. We are honored to do life with you and share the blessings of Christ in our community. 

Now... anyone want to come over for more brownie pie? :) Just let me know... :)

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