It’s Saturday morning. My husband has a group of men from church that has been meeting every Saturday morning at 7:00 a.m. for over 6 years. Honestly? It’s hard to imagine, but it’s true! In fact, some of them don’t know how to tell time yet, and they show up here at 6:30 a.m.! My job during this time is to make myself scarce.
I truly love hearing the guys laugh, joke around, share their lives, and pray for one another, but let me set this story straight. I don’t eavesdrop, I just overhear some things as I make my way from the kitchen to the front porch with my cup of coffee and maybe a kolache that one of the guys might bring. And there it is—my swing. My favorite spot. This is where I like to just stop, think, and talk with my friend God.
So, the other morning as I was sitting on the swing I started to think how seldom we see our neighbors. What happened to the front porch meetings in the evening? Where are the kids that used to play in the front yards while the parents watched and visited? And mostly, when was the last time we invited a neighbor over for a meal, or dessert, or a potluck or perhaps even a cup of coffee? Maybe it’s because we think everything has to be perfect. Have we been watching too much “Martha” or, God forbid, perusing Pinterest practically every day, realizing that we can never “measure up” to that standard!
I grew up in New Orleans, and we had a tradition called “pass by”. You didn’t need an invitation; you didn’t need to call, you just showed up and knocked on the door. It was exciting to see who would be coming over. No preparation needed. There was always a cold glass of water or a hot cup of coffee, maybe a cookie too. As my Mom would say, “We’ve always got peanut butter!”
So here’s a challenge. Why not get something going in your neighborhood? Yes, it might take a while, but wouldn’t it be great to get to know the people who live around you and develop a community for your family and others? Maybe, by developing pockets of “pass-byers” we could begin to change the world!