Like gatherings at most fire pits… there is no agenda for this meeting. The agenda is “hanging out.” Hanging out is a phrase I’ve been hearing more and more often these days. It describes a time when you don’t have anything particularly important to do or accomplish but you’d like to be together. So instead of saying something like, “you want to go for some coffee?” folks will say, “you wanna hang out?”
I’ve been to my share of church meetings where I wish that we would have shortened the agenda to about 10 minutes or so of whatever we needed to talk about and then say we’re just gonna “hang out.” Now, I know this would drive a lot of you out there crazy, but the truth is it might remind us that when we are at church, whatever we may think we are talking about, our agenda is each other.
Church is a community of faith where we listen to each other… where we help each other see that we are not alone in this world… Church is a place where we hang out together and in the hanging out, we have the opportunity to experience the love God has shared with the world in Jesus Christ.
So last night I was walking around the fire pit, just well, you know, hanging out with everybody. I went over to talk to my buddy Raymond. Raymond is I think about 3 or 4 and just got new glasses, but he wasn’t wearing them. When I asked Raymond where his glasses were he said, “I just didn’t want to wear them.” This made perfect sense to Raymond. His mom just gave me a look.
So I’m talking to Raymond, and I know his favorite color is green, so I ask, “Raymond, do you like green beans?” And he says “no.” I ask, “Do you like broccoli?” He says “no” again. So I say, “Raymond I thought your favorite color was green, what do you like to eat that is green?” And without hesitating as if it were the most obvious thing to say in the world, my buddy Raymond says, “I like doughnuts with green sprinkles and frosting on them.”
Now that is what happens when you just hang out with people. You find out stuff that matters to them. And when we find out stuff that matters to others, we begin to care for each other more deeply. Lately, that has become much more important to me.
Keep the Faith,