My husband and I have lived in our subdivision for twelve years. Our subdivision consists of eleven homes, each on a ten-acre lot. We met together once, about twelve years ago, to try to form a homeowners association. We were unsuccessful. Over the years, many of our neighbors have moved away and new ones have moved in.
I want to love my neighbors. How else can I share the gospel with them? But I have a problem. I don’t even know my neighbors. I practically never see them. I don’t know if children and marriages and occupations are thriving, whether individuals are languishing in loneliness, troubles, or doubts. I would love to sit down to a cup of coffee with the people who reside in the widely separated homes in our subdivision, but I don’t know them.
I’m going to have to be creative here. First I need to ask God for thoughts on how to accomplish community in a somewhat unlikely setting. I am fairly confident that He would like for me to get to know my neighbors, develop a relationship with them, and have opportunities to share His love with them. I am excited to see how He will answer my prayers.
Perhaps you live in a neighborhood with houses in close proximity. And you still don’t know your neighbors. If you don’t, please join me in asking God for His ideas. Ours is not an easy culture for community. But I believe God can cut through our busyness and isolation.
So far I have thought about inviting my neighbors to a cookie swap as Christmas approaches but before it gets too close. I’ve been on the computer to find the names and addresses of the people who live in our subdivision. My next step is to set a date, create invitations, and perhaps hand-deliver them so that I can make an initial contact with my neighbors. Perhaps then we would have a start. It may be a long process. We’ll see what God has in store.
Do you have ideas? I would love to hear what you have done to begin the process of getting to know your neighbors. Please let us hear from you so that we can learn from and encourage one another.