I talk about community all the time! I am so thankful for the community we have built in all the different places we have had the pleasure to live in for a period of time. I know how important it is to be in community and I know how much more deeply that is built when you open up the doors of your home and invite people in.
I have visions of a house full of kids after school, snacking around the table. I have visions of community scattered around the house, sipping tea and coffee and visiting. I have visions of having the home that people come and go from freely and always feel welcome. I want to be the woman who always has snacks to offer, a clean house to visit in and an easy going spirit.
Reality seems to be far from the vision. In reality, I am a person who loves her schedule and who is probably in pj’s if someone was to drop by at random. (homeschool mom probs). And my house is never just randomly clean, I’m a homeschool mom! My girls are here playing all day every day, we dont clean up until bedtime. Sometimes I struggle to find the happy place between the hospitable person I want to be and the anxious woman that I am.
But, God is so good. He is so all knowing and He thinks of everything. He gave me the best solution and push in this area in the form of a blonde haired, blue eyed 7 year old. My Hailey girl, she has a gift. She has a gift of bringing people together. She has this wonderful ability to not see differences or groups and to just love so big. She is so inclusive and loves to gather a group of people together. She wants everyone invited into the fun (remind you of anyone Er?).
One thing she does that has pushed me in the right direction in this area is invite people to supper. She will often invite anyone around to stay for supper (without checking with me first!) and then ask me if it’s ok right in front of them. While we do want to work on her methods and teach her to ask me first, I love that she just wants an open door and a big table. She’s taught me to be able to say “sure, please stay. I’ll make some sandwiches” and be able to change the plans to make a meal to accommodate her guests. I’m learning it doesn’t have to be fancy or thought out and many of our best opportunities to love people have come from her just inviting them to our table on a random evening.
I am learning that the person I wanted to be and felt God wanted me to be was being blocked by my own anxious need to plan all. the. things.
Thanks to Hailey girl, we aquired some extra booster seats second hand so we could say “sure” when she asked if so and so could come along with us somewhere. Thanks to her, we now try to keep a few quick snacks and meals on hand for short notice guests. Thanks to her, I’m learning to see the beauty in a spontaneous “yes”.
So yeah, I’m just over here trying to walk my talk and letting my 7 year old nudge me towards the person I want to be!
I’d love to hear how your kids are changing or have changed you! Share in the comments!