Forming relationships and being in relationship with one another is inherent to how we are made. When we are at our best and most joyous, we are in healthy relationship with others and the Father.
There is something about us that causes us to desire to form relationships – to know and be known, to exchange stories, to laugh, to cry, to be encouraged by one another. Deep down, we wants to pull away, to isolate ourselves, to hunker down and shore up our defenses because ‘the world isn’t safe’ and ‘it will be awkward’ or ‘what if they find out something about me I don’t want found out?’.
There is always a certain element of risk in relationship, but isn’t there with anything worth pursuing?
We need to be in relationship with one another, to be in community, to share stories, and to know others. Everyone long for this whether we have ever consciously subjected ourselves to such speculation or not. The majority of us learn more about ourselves when we experience authentic relationship.
Left to ourselves on our journey through life, all things whither away – they will not grow. We will live a dull, boring life, only temporarily assuaged through entertainment and stuff.
Pursuing and nurturing relationships with others help us grow into who we really are.
This is truly one of the most exciting things about traveling, for as CS Lewis says, “ We meet no ordinary people in our lives”. Everyone is unique, everyone is eternal, everyone has a story.
Whenever we leave the house to hit the trail on another adventure, there’s a chance that we might make a cherished friend. We have to be open to the giving and receiving of story and communion.
I think of Lewis’ thoughts on friendship:
“Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another, ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one”
We never know where or when this will whimsically happen. But we increase the likelihood when we place ourselves in relevant situations. We need to step out of our comfort zones a bit to do so.
It’s not stuff, it is memories, stories, relationships.
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