Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Office Hours

One thing that I have been very bad at that many of my colleagues in ministry do on a regular basis is: have office hours - times when they are available specifically for conversation and counseling and the like. These office hours take place in a variety of settings - some at a church office, some in coffee shops or bookstores, others in parks or street corners (certainly when it is warmer out!). 

So today I decided that instead of working out of the house, as is my usual pattern, I would work at Wicked Big Cafe downtown. I was meeting someone there for coffee later in the afternoon before going to volunteer at Emmaus later in the evening. Yay me for getting out of the house! I posted a quick update on Facebook to invite people to drop by if they wanted to chat or hang out. 

I want to do this more regularly. It's good to get out, to get regrounded in the community, to smell the fresh coffee and watch the people walk in and out and absorb the atmosphere of a place. It's been far too long since I've made this a regular part of my routine. It's important for those of us who love the places we live and for those of us seeking to make God's dream real for a place to be out in it on a regular basis -- at different times and places, encountering the people whose stories make up the narrative of the place. 

I guess in a sense, I have office hours all the time -- when I'm out walking the dog, when I'm sitting in the cafe with a good book or a good friend, when I'm behind the counter at Mitch's place serving the evening meal. Every conversation is an opportunity for encounter and transformation -- not just for the other person, but for me as well.

Just some quick Wednesday afternoon thoughts for you all.  I'm late for Emmaus. Catch you later!

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