3.18.2011

Hi.

Today's Prompt:
Friday, March 18, 2011
You're standing in line behind someone you don't know but who you really want to talk to. What do you do?

To be honest, I'm amused that this question was deemed interesting enough to be picked as a daily prompt. But it is fairly telling. As we become increasingly urbanized, people don't talk to strangers much. Our increasing technology throws another wrench in the gears. How do we make conversation with people who are thoroughly plugged in, checked out from what is immediately around them, and immersed in the bubble of music created by their iPods or the bubble of distant conversation produced by text messaging, their cell phone, their Kindle, iPad, or occasionally (*gasp*) book or newspaper?

We get teams at the Centre a few times a year whose main assignment for those days is to connect with the community and get someone's story. Many of them are intimidated. One group of college students asked, "How do we start conversations with someone we don't know?" I smiled and said, "Hi." They all just laughed and laughed. But really, that's how it starts. Go out in an attitude of prayer, with an expectation that God will do something, open your eyes and look at people, instead of through them, smile, and say, "Hi." You never know where God will lead you from there. I've gotten many stories from people, just because I said hi. Another thing is just to be observant. I started a conversation with a lady the other day because she was sitting next to me reading Hemingway. I can't see myself reading Hemingway for fun, so I asked, "Are you reading Hemingway for fun or for school?" We had a good conversation about literature. It didn't go anywhere spiritual, but it could have; how would I have known?

The next time you're standing in line behind someone you don't know but really want to talk to, step a little to the side, so you're in their peripheral vision, and say, "Hi." If you're feeling really gutsy, you might even follow it with, "How are you doing?" You never know. You could be the first stranger to talk to that person in days, the first friendly face in a long time. Just say, "Hi."

Praises
  • I'm speaking on Monday at my Canadian church. It is an incredible privilege, and I am very excited. I've already got my powerpoint and a handout, which is a minor miracle.
  • God threw me a freebie last Saturday morning, and I got to share from the Bible with my landlord.
  • I had three basic conversations (very basic) in Farsi last week, which was pretty cool.
Prayer Requests
  • Now that I've posted all that about just saying, "Hi," pray for me for boldness to do just that. Pray for divine appointments with ladies. Guys are easier to talk to in public, partially because they're looking to talk to women, but it's not really a great thing for me to start lots of conversations with guys. Pray that I'll run into women who are open.
  • Pray for wisdom in how to use my time on Thursdays and Fridays. Pray for clear ideas of where to go.
  • Please continue to pray for provision for the Centre. Pray that God would raise up people to give of their time and their money. We had 41 students last Saturday for Arabic and English, and we're maxing out our space. We need volunteers and wisdom in splitting class times up.
Thank you for praying for me!
-Jennifer

2 comments:

Cary Beth said...

Hi! I like your blog and I like the new picture of Can-Can at the top.

The End.

Mrs. Pankhurst said...

Thank you, Cary Beth!