"The weather today is great, isn't it?"
"Hey! How are you?"
"Can't wait for summer to get here."
Small talk. It happens to the best of us - at work, at the grocery store when we're waiting for grumpy Bill in the poultry section to ask us what we want, at church, and in our iPhones. It's the worst, and it quite honestly gives me incredible anxiety to be participating in a conversation I know is leading nowhere. I do not care about the weather forecast. I'll wear a coat if it's too cold tomorrow, thanks. I'd rather talk about spiritual things, the concept of eternity, awesome bands, the actual possibility of unicorns, and what it means to be alive. Anything short of that is not a real conversation to me.
Have we forgotten how to be real with one another? It seems as though we'd rather discuss the things going on around us, so we can avoid the things going on within us.
Today, I will be intentional with my conversations. I will make an effort to ask my friends how I can pray for them. If someone at work seems "off", I will offer a listening ear and a caring heart. Instead of saying "Hi" to a stranger and going about my way, I will stop and compliment something about them. Today, I will go beyond the small talk. If someone asks how I'm doing, I will tell them.
I feel lonely because I don't make an effort. I wait for others to enter my life, and that's just not how it works.
"Heavenly Father, thank you for another day to enjoy your creation. Today, I ask that you would search my heart and rid me of my doubts, insecurities, resentments, and fears. I pray that your Spirit would be ever-present within me & around me. I pray that you would open my eyes to the people around me. Give me the peace and patience to be a friend to all. May your love abound today, Lord. Amen."