City life consists of busy streets, row homes and front porches! I knew I would enjoy moving to the city, mainly because I like so many things about the fast pace life of city living and all that comes with it; but I didn’t see myself enjoying having a front porch as much as I have.
I mean, it’s fantastic. I know, I know: it’s just a porch. But it really isn’t just a porch.
Our front porch is this amazing window of opportunity every time we leave our house. When we see a neighbor sitting outside on their porch or walking by with their dog it can be (and has been) the chance to hear more of their story – more of who they are, who they want to be, where they came from and everything in between!
I was inspired to write this post because in less than 24 hours the Lord has provided opportunities for myself (and my roomies) to interact with at least 4-5 of the neighbors on our street. That’s at least 8 people who we didn’t know 7 weeks ago, but who we’ve been given the opportunity to get to know since moving in.
We are beyond blessed to have such a missional gateway. It’s so clear that we have been called to intentionally live life on this street, getting to know these specific souls. It’s really humbling and phenomenal and fun – and all at the same time.
We haven’t even been here for two months and I’ve learned about their jobs, their schooling, their likes and dislikes, their generosity, their curiosity about us moving here and our churches, their habits and more. BUT there is so much more to learn and much more investment to be made – literally it’s limitless.
When I left California the reality of my relational mission field changing so drastically was something I didn’t want to think too much about. Although I was confident making this move was the right decision, my heart was torn about the significant changes that could occur in the deep friendships I have built with co-workers and the relationships Emilie and I had been building with some of our neighbors. It’s still something that I have to come to terms with and balance properly, because physical distance is the reality. However, the Lord has not only been gracious to allow many of those relationships to continue and remain strong across the miles; but He’s also given me a mission field literally and immediately a step outside my front door.
It’s a porch that’s quickly being surrounded by the telling of stories. It’s a stoop that’s becoming common ground to share life experiences with people who were strangers less than two months ago. It’s a set of stairs that’s the setting for a witnessing opportunity. It’s our missional stepping stone and the door to our relational welcome mat (and our literal one).
I can’t wait for us to get a bench out there!