If you’re like me, you probably have many answers to the question, “how are you doing?”
- I’m doing well! And you?
- It’s alright. Maybe not the best week, but that’s okay.
- Not bad! Can’t complain.
And these answers are fine, especially if you’re seeing someone in passing. But if these are the only answers you ever give, you are closing off your heart, and denying the fellowship of others.
In high school, my drama teacher didn’t allow one word answers. When asked how we were doing, we had to tell how we were doing, and why. It was annoying to most, and painful to many. But he taught us such a valuable lesson in communication and relationship building. You get to the heart of the matter, and engage the other person by talking about the why.
Trust and relationships are two way streets. And this is where I struggle the most often. Vulnerability means exposing yourself — your true self. But vulnerability also means inviting someone into your life. And the latter is worth the former. Yes, you might get hurt. Yes, you might embarrass yourself. But if that happens, then that person isn’t the type of person you want in your tribe anyway.
By closing off your heart, you are denying fellowship with others.
Since moving back home after 6 years away for university, I have had to make new friends and find a new normal. When meeting new people, there isn’t the same familiarity that I have with old friends, so it can be hard to open up.
I’m not pointing my finger at you, I’m pointing my finger at myself. I am guilty of keeping my guard up more than anyone. I have mastered the art of sharing more than a one word answer, but less than a full response. Because of this, I feel like I am stuck in a world of in-between. I crave more from myself, and I want to go deeper with friends.
Live authentically and invite others into your life.
There are some things that are worth guarding, but my pride isn’t one of them. I wonder what it would be like to live life as an open book, to put it all out there and live authentically and invite new friends into my life.
Let’s have a real heart-to-heart. Send me a message, let’s meet up for coffee. I’d love to share what’s on my heart, and know how to pray for you. I may be mega socially awkward (hi!), but I genuinely love connecting.
Not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.
– Hebrews 10:25
By inviting someone into your life, you are allowing them to encourage you, and to pray with you. You allow them to know you, the real you.
If you see me on the street and ask me how I’m doing, and I say “I’m doing well, and you?”, you have my permission to ask me how I’m really doing. I will most likely be taken aback. But give me a moment (and let my introvert mind process for a second), and I’ll get back to you on how I’m really doing, and why.
I love hearing life stories, and I want to challenge you (and myself) to live authentically and share your life’s stories.