Friday, November 21, 2008

The View From the Top (Part I)

You may or may not have noticed that I changed my profile picture on here. (That was an accomplishment, in and of itself, by the way.)

The new picture is one of me with a couple of "my closest", atop beautiful Petit Jean Mountain, near Morrillton, AR.

I thought that was a very interesting way to put it. Before we left for our camping trip up there a couple of weekends ago, a friend of mine sent me an e-mail wishing me "safe travel to you and your closest." It almost struck me as funny how accurate and appropriate that statement really was. In fact, I think that's one of the greatest blessings I've got in my life right now as a single person...the fact that they really are some of my closest.

If you are not single...if you are married...think about your life as a married person for a moment...what do you do on a daily basis? You wake up...greet your family...perhaps you see the kids off to school and a spouse off to work. You go to work yourself. But you come home in the evening to your family. You eat dinner with your family. Perhaps you put the kids to bed before spending some quality time with your spouse.

As a single person, I wake up alone. Get ready for work alone. Go off to work alone. Come home and have dinner, eventually go to bed alone. Not lonely, but alone. You know what keeps me from being lonely? Those people who, although not related to me, really are some of my closest. Although I don't have family members that I see every day, I've got these incredible people that I get to see and spend time with nearly every day.

Typically, in a week, there is Sunday morning church, perhaps Sunday lunch, and there is definitely Sunday dinner after evening worship. On Tuesday nights is our ladies' Bible study/prayer group, where we spend a couple of hours talking about whatever is on our hearts. Wednesday nights, of course, is our class, usually followed up by dinner somewhere. Thursday nights, I'll admit, is an off-night. Friday night is our chance to unwind from the week. We gather in our "Singles living room"--a corner of our Singles classroom that is furnished w/sofas, comfortable chairs, and a big-screen TV. In fact, as I type this right now, that's where we are gathered, with the movie Iron Man playing in the background. But, often times, the TV is never even turned on! We've spent many a Friday night just visiting...getting to know each other...being a part of each other's lives. Even on the days that we don't see each other, thanks to the blessed technology of the Internet, we are able to communicate through e-mail, messages, and, yes, Facebook!

And if that weren't enough, we make an effort to spend time with each other outside of our regular gathering times. For example...there's an art studio conveniently located across the street from our church. It is a pottery-painting shop, where you can go in, pay the price on that pottery, and that covers the cost to paint, glaze and fire the pottery. This shop usually closes at 6, but one night a month is "Ladies' night" where she will stay open till about 9 or so. So me and some of my closest girls have decided to take advantage of this the past couple of months and spend an evening painting pottery together.

Another example would be about a month ago, when a friend said, "Hey, let's go climb Pinnacle Mountain this Sunday afternoon!" Yet another example is when a couple of them said, "Hey, let's go camping at Petit Jean this weekend!" I guess those are the experiences that are really worth sharing with you guys, and I'll get around to writing that blog here pretty soon.

But for now, I just wanted to set the stage as far as who these people are that I experienced both of those mountain tops with. They are not just some folks I go to church with and see a couple of times a week. They are my closest.

Thanks for reading. Much love!