By Kelly Carr
As we conclude our See Your Community series, we want to take a deeper dive into the challenge of evaluating our neighborhoods. As we’ve discussed serving needs and building relationships in our communities, another piece fits into this puzzle—who are we missing?
There are many reasons people get pushed to the margins of society. It may be that their plight isn’t publicized in the news. If we don’t know someone with a certain kind of illness or limitation, for instance, we may never know that certain struggles exist.
It may be that people are ostracized because of their choices. The downward spiral of bad behavior can end in a wakeup call, but those decisions may have already alienated all loved ones in a person’s life. Who do they turn to now?
We may miss others simply because they are different than us—we gravitate toward people with whom we have things in common, and we might not think to associate ourselves with people beyond our comfort zone.
Now we push ourselves to look around us again with a new perspective. Who in our community needs us? I’m talking to you directly. And I’m talking to me. I’m not asking what your church could be doing. I’m not asking what advocacy organizations need to be started. Those are good things. And perhaps they are the next steps. But first I’m asking: who needs you and me to personally notice them? and befriend them? and be Jesus’ love to them?
It starts with us. Let’s ask God’s Spirit to guide us. Then let’s open our eyes and take another look.