The new year brings with it questions about the last. And the one question asked most last year revolved around learning. In other words, what did you learn from loving your neighbours? ‘Learning’ itself was central to all that went on in Neighbourhood Life. Too many people can show a desire to help without knowing the root cause, much like the mission field in developing countries where the visitor comes in with a saviour mentality and solves the problem. I was that guy, wanting to buy a flag for a poor school, only to find out that the flag was not raised until certain celebrations, or the time I bought an appliance for one family only to find out that it would misused due to lack of electricity. Others feel that ‘loving your neighbour’ means they must be a service provider of some sort, or adds to the schedule, making our love for neighbours more of a checklist item in our life. Perhaps we should just live to learn from our neighbours before we breathe any life into their lives.
In the mean time, Neighourhood Life is suggesting other disciplines for 2018. Last year we covered the practice of re-imagining and the practice of hospitality as disciplines in our neighbourhood. Starting January 14th, we will focus on the practice of vulnerability, which in itself is a topic that begins to make us vulnerable. The reason we want to take this discipline head on is because its a game changer among neighbours. The discussion of ‘practicing vulnerability among neighbours’ brings a variety of emotions to the forefront, no doubt! In February we will focus on the practice of investment and the practice of trust. Later, in the spring, we will practice the art of conversation as a way to lead us into block party season.
If you want a head start n these disicplines, you will find them in my book, “Neighouring for Life’ available on lulu.com or amazon.
Happy New Year!