Wednesday, August 20, 2014

The Art of Community: Open Door Policy

I wrote about the "village" a few weeks back. I wrote about how it looks a little different than it did even 50 years ago, and I shared a little about what my village looks like. I even said it's up to us to make sure we maintain a "village" and we can't wait for the village to come to us.

I've never been one for drop in guests. Mostly because I lack discipline and you may knock on my door at 1:00pm to an un-showered, still in PJ's frantic Mom of three little boys and a messy house to boot. I didn't like the idea of someone coming unannounced, even if they brought coffee and I enjoyed cocooning myself until I felt we were "presentable" and always scheduled our play-dates and such.

On the other hand, I love that I had a friend or two who welcomed this idea and often reminded me to stop in at any time and say hello, I thought "my goodness how lovely that must feel that free"

I realized of course, that it was my issue, my selfishness and my need to control a situation that was causing me to put up an invisible wall to unannounced guests. I also realized in doing this, I wasn't allowing any opportunity for free fellowship, much needed encouragement for myself and others and I was putting restrictions on when community could happen.

When we view people as interruptions, we diminish the reality that God uses interruptions to bring about His work 

So, I have decided to change that.

 I want you to drop in. I want you to know that you're welcome to come say hello without texting me first.

Are you on your way home from grocery shopping and need a hug? Knock on my door.

Kids making you crazy and you need 15 minutes of adult conversation while your littles run around with my crazies? Stop by.

Need a free cup of coffee and a cookie and maybe a good cry? Swing on over.

Wanted to share a story with me, but texting it was too long? Show up.

Have to change a diaper or go to the bathroom yourself? We have a toilet. 

I may be out running errands, getting Jack from school or with my husband on a hot date...but please at least try. You may run into another person while you're here and you may not even know them.

 All the better.

I promise to have cookie dough in the freezer waiting to be baked, coffee ready to brew, creamer in the fridge and my teeth brushed. I promise to have Pandora Spa Suite at the ready and a candle to burn even if you can't hear it due to the sounds of my littles.

I can't promise my kids will behave, or that my house will be clean or that my dog won't jump on you and I can't promise I will always be here, or that I won't need to leave soon after you arrive...I can't promise I won't be taking a nap or that I will be having a great day myself..(also I may be in yoga pants)

but I can promise that my house is a safe place. A place to bring your happy days and sad days, a place for a break or for renewal. Whether you sit for 15 minutes or we chat for an hour.... it doesn't matter.

Please just know you're welcome here.

Don't text me or message me or call me. Just come over and be real.

What about you? Could you create an open door policy? Don't think about the reasons not to, think about why you should.


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