.two thousand sixteen.
Well, Happy New Year. I cannot believe it’s already 2016, 2015 proved to be one of the best years of my life. So much change, so many accomplishments, so much joy.
Intentional (Adj.): done in a way that is planned or intended.
This year, I wanted to take a word and allow it to help guide how I live out 2016. I want to take the time to really love people and love them well. The phrase “I’m busy” is all to common of a response…Someone asks, “How are you”, a simple and common reply, “Oh you know just busy.” Stop with that word, let’s BAN BUSY, let’s no longer allow that to be our response when friends who genuinely care about us ask how we are doing. Let’s be real with people, let’s allow our conversation to be true to what we are actually going through. Maybe it was a long day at work, maybe you’re fighting with your significant other, maybe you found out a family member is ill, maybe you are in a funk. SHARE IT. Allow people to do what the body of Christ is called to do, love. Allow people to pray through that hard day, week, or maybe month; allow them to storm heavens gates for you.
I want to take the time to be intentional, when someone asks me how I’m doing, I want to be honest (“Well, you know I am really struggling with ____”). Let people know, let people in. Let them see the mess, don’t be afraid to share the your deepest struggles. Jennie Allen said it best, “The bravery of saying what God has saved us from, will set others free” #HOLLER That’s such a good word right there. I have seen it true in my own life and I know it can be true of yours and those you have a direct impact on.
Back to being intentional. I have let some friendships fall to the wayside, because I have used that common response of, “I’m busy.” I don’t want to use that excuse anymore. I don’t want to just text my friends, I want to take the TIME to actually call them. Or even better write letters (PS, If you wanna be a my pen pal, let a sister know, I would love that; how cool would be if we could also get a group of girls to do it, even if we’ve never met). Let’s reach out to those friendships we’ve let go, let’s be the people our friends need. I love this quote Shelley Giglio posted, “You’ll need coffee shops and sunsets and road trips. Airplane and passports and new songs and old songs, but people more than anything else. YOU WILL NEED OTHER PEOPLE. And you will need to be that other person to someone else, a living, breathing, breathing, screaming, invitation to believe better thingS.” GOODNESS that is such truth. I want to be that for someone, but not just those I see on a regular basis, but those friends that are at a distance. Those friends that I have to take time to talk with, to be intentional, to love with no restraint.
I recently read a really good book by Shauna Niequist that was phenomenal and someone who really lives out the word intentional with those she loves, both near and far. There was so much to take from that book, so much truth and honesty, but one of my favorite quotes is this…
“let’s be courageous in these days. Let’s choose love and rest and grace. Let’s use our minutes and hours to create memories with the people we love instead of dragging them on one more errand or shutting them while we accomplish one more seemingly necessary thing. Let’s honor the story.”
I want to invite people into my home, just because for no other reason than to talk and drink coffee/wine. I want people to just stop by because they’re in the neighborhood or even if they aren’t I want my home to be a place where people feel heard, loved, and comfortable. I want it to be a place of rest and hope. I want it to truly be a place where people are welcomed.
So friends, please join me. Join me as I take 2016 to love people with abandonment. Let’s be intentional, let’s ban busy, let’s be real. Let’s do life no matter the distance.