Monday, July 1, 2013

Building Better Communities: Being a Blessing to Others

I remember just after high school and college, there was a lot of thought about direction, purpose, and identity.  What do I want to be, what do I want to do "when I grow up," what are my goals and ambitions.  Now that I have achieved many of my academic goals, I have been impacted by the worldview that whatever I am "doing," my purpose is to be a blessing to those around me.  It is what God said to Abraham (Genesis 12:2 "...I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing" ESV).  It is akin to the movements to "pay it forward" or to practice "random acts of kindness."

Being a blessing may be a long term thing.  It may involve developing deep lasting relationships with others, or community projects that are involved and complex.  It also may involve something on a smaller scale like paying for the person behind you in the drive through (something I love to do by the way!).  We may think about how to be a blessing to our children's teachers, our doctor, our boss, or our city. 

I am intrigued by a book (on my summer reading list) called The Art of Neighboring which talks about how to become more connected with the people in our own neighborhood. If the goal of "being a blessing" seems to big for us, we need only look outside our front door, meet our neighbors, and keep in mind our goal to bless.