In all my pretentious glory, I extol often the ideals of
community. My wife and I have been going back over these two
shelves that we got from IKEA that she wanted to install. I
insisted I didn’t have time, she insisted that she could do it without
me. I’ll spare you the details, but my wife ended up going to a
neighbor to borrow a set of drill bits. Instead of sending her
off with a back of bits, he came over and analyzed our situation.
Then he called his dad over and they promptly installed both shelves
for us. Now we have two beautiful shelves…and the pleasure of
having met a neighbor.
There was nothing really glorious about the whole thing, I mean it was
IKEA, it was shelves. But the leap from borrowing to installing
was really noteworthy. And it wasn’t even a big deal for him and
Most of us talk a big game, but we busy our lives with so many
responsibilities and success that our lives have nothing lasting to
show for it. I look at what it means to be neighbor–and it
really wasn’t a big deal–I doubt my neighbor had to “pray about
it.” Maybe us thinking types need to funnel some of that blood
from our head to our hands and feet. Maybe being Christian is
part tightening up, but also part loosening up. In this case,
being a Christian neighbor means loosening up my life to let others in;
loosening up my hand to extend without expecting compensation.