friends > meetings

For those of you who don't know me, I am in ministry. I work full-time at a church in Durham, NC, as the communications director. My job is mostly about media, systems, web, etc. -- most days, I have very little face-to-face ministry opportunities. But that doesn't mean my job isn't ministry. My job is, and always has been, about making the name and message of Jesus clear -- getting rid of the clutter so people can see Him for who He really is. Sometimes though, in the daily grind, I can forget this. I can get caught up in action steps, in diagrams, in best practices. I can lose myself in books and ideas, anchor myself in decisions and outcomes. I can be consumed by checklists and bent on getting things done, all at the expense of being fully present and fully available to the people and the world around me.

This week was a week full of reminders that at the end of the day, my life as a follower of Christ (and perhaps our lives as humans, fully-alive) is all about people.

It started at the beginning of the week, when I read a tweet that reminded me that my job was not ultimately about things on my checklist, but about people. And then what followed was moment after moment to remember and  practice that.

So this is what I learned this week: Deep, spontaneous conversations are worth it, no matter the interruption. Opening your church's door to a foreigner and offering them tea might just happen, if you're willing to put down your work. Unproductive meetings might have produced something else... laughter, friendship, community. Unfinished items are better than unfinished conversations.

It seemed to all come to a head when late in the week, I literally needed to be three places at once and all of them interfered with lunch plans with a friend. I thought about cancelling... even sent a text to apologize and try to reschedule. But then I remembered. People are most important. Friends > meetings. Any day.