Years ago, when I lived in Germany, I remember my frightening first trip on the Autobahn; it seemed like everyone was driving at a speed above 80 MPH. I got in my very slow, no pick-up car, and huddled on the side of the road, praying for my life. Everyone else seemed calm and confident. Why? They were used to this speed and I wasn’t. By the time I left Germany three years later, I could drive – with confidence – as fast as the rest of them (and yes, I did buy a car with more pick up speed- otherwise I would have been killed)
Another ‘blast from the past’ story…
When I was a teenager I drove in the passing lane from Charleston to Columbia. I was pulled over by a policeman and he asked me why I had been driving in the passing lane the whole time. I told him that I saw the sign “slower traffic keep right and I was faster traffic.” Not the best answer. Yes, I got a ticket and he did not think I was funny.
Here’s my point: we all seem to be traveling in the fast lane these days. When I ask people how they are doing the answer is almost always: ” I’m busy.” One friend says “I am blessed” but he appears to be pretty busy too! Truth is, there seems to be an epidemic of staying in the fast lane in life. People need connection with one another but it is becoming more difficult to find time to get together. We all need connection – however, connection requires slowing down and intentionally investing in relationships.
A few years ago, I started my connection plan. I stop everyday between 2 and 2:30pm to have coffee, whether I am at home or out. It’s not just a coffee break for me, it is my unwinding time, my me time. It is also a time that I meet with people to spend an hour with friends or family. I have the flexibility with my work to do this during the day that many of you do not have – so my suggestion is find your own connection time. Find a time that you spend with someone else and turn off your phone. It works. Everyone needs to connect.
Jesus always seemed to have time for his best friends (Peter, James, John) and for the rest of the disciples. He spent time with them, explaining things and reminding them that there would be a day when they could no longer be with Him in person, but that He would never forsake or leave them. He promised to send the Holy Spirit.
It is out of our time of connecting to Jesus the Vine (we are the branch) that authentic connection will happen with others. What do I mean by authentic connection? Spending quality time with someone in open, honest conversation, sharing your lives, and encouraging one another.
Precious making space for God friends: I am challenging all of you to find your way to connect with others. For each of us it will be different, however the rewards will be worth the effort.