Whew! The celebrations of the holidays are already fading to a wonderful, crazy blur of festive memories.
But memories matter.
Because memories give birth to the roots that keep us connected to the sacred and meaningful moments of joy, peace, hope, and love that sprang up throughout the holiday season.
Many, many good and meaningful times were shared with our community. Food, presents, reflections, affirmations, and blessings – given with great love and friendship.
But what truly makes celebrating the holidays with our community special is not found in the traditional revelry.
It is formed by the ways that we live life together.
During the recent holiday season, the day I was planning a Christmas dinner with our Thursday night family of guys, ended up being the same evening that my youngest son was participating in the winter concert at his school. It was his debut public trumpet performance with the school’s beginning band. And he was very excited. (Yet another example of my short-comings in basic administrative skills.)
So we combined these two very important events into one evening of celebration.
We met at our house before and after the concert to enjoy food, gifts, dessert, and Mexican hot chocolate.
And a few of our guys came to the two-hour elementary school band concert with us.
Now that is truly living life together.
Developing community in our homes is not about hosting and entertaining. At it’s core it is about sharing all parts of our lives together.
I’m looking forward to more of this in 2016.
Not just inviting people into our home, but into our life. It’s what makes all the difference.
This year we’ll enjoy many meals around The Table, but we will also show up for each others’ significant life events.
Together we’ll laugh and cry, celebrate and mourn, cheer each other on and pick each other up.
Band performances, birthday parties, graduations, engagements, weddings, business ventures, professional/vocational accomplishments, religious sacraments, little league games, and school concerts.
As well as collectively carrying one another’s burdens of pain, disappointments, failures, break-ups, crisis, illness, and losses.
It is how we will live hope, peace, joy, and love in 2016.
Experiencing all of this together is what will make the meals around The Table rich and full and satisfying.
It may not be an easy year. Or a “happy year”. But it will be good.
What are the ways that you plan to live life with your community in 2016?