I’m not a party person. I never have been. When I was a kid Mom would give Shirley a birthday party every summer. As my birthday approached in September she would give me a choice, a party or a better present. The present always won; I had to attend Shirley’s party anyway. A boy should only have to endure one round of “Pin the Tail on the Donkey” a year.
I never learned to like parties. In reality I am a shy person with the hint of some underlying insecurities, perhaps even a little neurosis. I know; my ministry puts me in front of people six days a week and I love it. Cheryl says I “send out my stage persona” or alter ego. Being up front allows me to control the interaction and not have to risk rejection. That sounds like pretty good psycho-babble to me and gives me a good excuse to not like parties.
Last night we had three couples over for a “Mystery Party.” Cheryl developed characters and a plot and placed clues throughout the house. She prepared a great meal and afterwards the couples started trying to solve the murder by finding and interpreting the clues. Okay, the party was on my turf and I always enjoy entertaining at home, or almost always.
The thing about this party that made it special was the guests. If I recall correctly, this was the first time in many years we entertained people who were not from New Covenant, or family or from out of town. We really enjoy having children, youth, families, and staff from the church in our home; that’s always like a family reunion. We also love having family and professional friends from other places stay with us. We are rich in relationships that matter.
But last night different; they were friends we have known for many years and see often but we never have time for fellowship with them. It was like adding a missing component to our relationships. I am reminded of how important it is to spend time with friends when the agenda is not about doing something, but rather just to have an enjoyable time getting to know each other better. I am thankful.
October 23, 2010