Being that it was just Memorial Day weekend, the unofficial start of summer in the US, I took the time to be like many and get on the road a bit. What was supposed to be two cities in three days has turned into four cities in five. Lots of driving, and therefore people and questions about me and what I do abound.
One such conversation started on the subject of Coca-Cola and Mexicans and evolved into the percetions that we have for one another in the Charlotte area. There are a number of things that are easily seen on the surface, but other times where those “southern personalities” are a bit more hidden – deliberately. It was interesting hearing from someone else how they saw it and how it has marred their views of the area. Not that I disagreed, but we both had a bit of an unanswered question as to why people continue with masks the way that they do.
Another conversation had to do with racism and religion. The conversation started about my iPad, and then evolved to what do I do for work, and then that opened the door to both religion and racism. It was really an interesting conversation too. I had no clue the connections that some could make between religion and culture – but this person had a viewpoint that wasn’t born in the “Bible Belt.” His view of how life and religion should connect – they shouldn’t – were remarkable. He asked me a few questions that I had a hard time with. I wasn’t sure that I would be able to sit very long within them. But, I was honest with him. There are aspects of living in this area that I know that I won’t understand even if I were to plant roots in certain neighborhoods. My perception of him was that he was looking for where he could plant, without being offended at the result of the fruit.
Then there was a conversation about a birthday and passion had today. It is amazing to see people step out towards their dream and be utterly amped about what they are doing. I do this everyday myself, but I think that in conversations like that I’m able to get a chance to see what I’ve looked like over the past year and have a better understanding of how I’m perceived. I can’t wait to see what this friend does. It is almost like on her birthday that she was able to open the gift of finding herself. Amazing.
Last thought had to do with a conversation that I had over the course of two conversations with the same person on Monday. To the person, I was asked something simple about the prostelization of the Christian faith to others, specifically, how would I “lead someone to Christ.” Ironically, that’s not a situation that I’ve been in. I usually get the folks who’ve been hurt, bruised or disenfranchised by the church. I don’t mind that, its been where I’ve been asked to be by life’s circumstances. This conversation asked though why I didn’t seek those whom were “lost.” It wasn’t something that I could answer, I don’t even seek what I do in mobile, I’ve stumbled upon it. And I do see where others find their roles/purposes in seeking such. It different than the questions from circles that I usually sit in, and gives me a chance to learn something new. I’ll enjoy this question, but for now its an unanswered one. The perception though is that I’ll find out something new about myself, and maybe have another picture of this life to wrap some words and ink around.