Wow! I’m typing this really late tonight (it’s 2:00 AM where I am right now). I also still have an English assignment I have to type, but I can sleep in on Tuesday so it works out. If I’m tired tomorrow, it’s what I get for procrastinating and watching anime instead of doing homework! So here’s my day’s overview: I went to church, came back and ate, tried to do homework, fell asleep, woke up, tried to do homework, was invited to do homework in a friend’s room (psshh, we all know that doesn’t actually doesn’t happen), left to watch the anime episode that just came out today because it’s ongoing, was interrupted in the middle to go have dinner with said friends, came back, watched anime, did a tiny bit of homework during the opening song, etc., and I just finished the anime. Which is not ongoing. Grr! I want more! So, my thought for today will (sadly, I’m sure) be brief (probably not really).
In church today, the leader leading the lesson mentioned a challenge given out two weeks ago (I was not there, I was at home for Thanksgiving break). Apparently, this challenge was to talk to someone most people wouldn’t: a social outcast, if you will. I started thinking about it, but as hard as I tried I could not come up with a social outcast at my current school (which I spend most of the day in my room, so I don’t really know…). As far as I could tell, I’m the most “socially outcast” person in the school (I put it in parenthesis because it’s not to say I’m rejected but rather that I don’t have many friends). Which led me to another thought…my dad. Recently, just this past year, I really started noticing and thinking about my dad’s interactions with others. He has fun shaking hands with little kids, he’ll talk things over with teenagers, and he asks how adults are doing. He’s more introverted, like me (I’m DEFINITELY a daddy’s girl), but he will go out of his way to meet with others and ask how they’re doing. That includes teenagers too. He finds unique ways of bonding with people – I remember one “girl” (she might be out of college by now, I don’t know) in particular. I don’t even know her real name, but I know he calls/called her Francesca and she calls/called him Ralph. He does it with another dude too. So a couple months I asked him about it. I know where he got it from – I see my grandfather do it too when I’m at their church – but I was curious about when it started and some other stuff. He said – and this is the point I want to get at – that he made an effort to care about people. Let me elaborate a little – all this stuff I’ve been describing isn’t easy for him. He told me he kinda started when he was a teenager, just asking how people were. He’s the guy that goes out of his way to care. He does the little things. He listens. He takes the initiative. And people like him because they know cared. They know that it takes more effort to say that hello when you’ve had a bad morning. They know that he cares about them because it’s authentic. It’s not fake, it’s not passing – every week, I can guarantee you that he’s out in the crowd asking people how they’re doing and what’s up. And it’s this idea that is so much more important than I think we realize. I don’t have a bible verse on hand to support this. But we are commanded to show God’s love. What if we started caring? What if we started investing in others’ lives? What if we stopped thinking and started leading – with our hearts? I’m a shy individual, but if I feel comfortable with you then there are times I won’t shut up. My parents do not need to prod me to tell them about my day. They’re more likely to tell me to stop talking about it. But I don’t get close to people who never talk to me. It’s the ones who do talk to me, who take the time to say hi and then say it again. It’s not a one-time deal. I feel like guys have an easier time doing this than girls do. My dad, my grandfather, another dude at my church here – but I don’t think it’s just a guy thing. I think girls can do it too, if they bother to look at the person .You can come up to me five times to talk about make-up, but I won’t care less. If you came and talked to me about me, though…that’s another story. Sometimes, it’s better not to have a topic. It’s not enough to casually do it. You have to do it with purpose. I apologize for not using that term sooner, it would have saved some explaining. That phrase is really important. How often do we follow God with purpose? We try to work on any number of things, but how often does it have a purpose? If I had to guess at my dad’s purpose, I’d guess it to be forming a relationship with people so that they know he cares. Because then he can do so much from there, working through God’s power. Could I guess the purpose in what you’re doing?