I’ve noticed that everywhere I go, people want community. They want somewhere where they enjoy being, they know people & they are known. They might not refer to it exactly like this, but they’re searching for a place they belong.
The weirdest place I found that people are trying to find belonging is www.icechewing.com, which is a forum for people who like to chew ice. I mean really like to chew ice. There’s one guy who says he has days when he consumes fifteen glasses of ice a day. I mean, I like ice as much as the next guy but this is some next level stuff!
I also watched a documentary on something called Second Life which is some weird online “game” that’s absolutely not as fun as … y’know… actual games. You create a virtual person, walk around in some freaky post-apocalyptic world inhabited only by other virtual people & a few trees. But the documentary went to talk about the real people who make actual close friends via this game & some of them meet up, fall in love, have children, build a family & all that stuff.
We want community.
We desire to be known & have a place of belonging. For some people that’s going to the football game & cheering their team with fellow fans &… well, for others it’s chewing ice. The point is we want it. We want to connect over our hobbies, our passions & our desires.
I want the same. I want to be in a community & I want to belong somewhere. I do this in a few ways, one of which is meeting with others who want that community. I’m an idiot & I do stupid things & say stupid things. I’m rude, slightly arrogant & a tad self-centered. I want people around me to level me out & help me find God’s direction for me. I need that community as much as the next guy. It helps push me toward being a better me.
“But what is it about that group that actually makes me belong?” I hear you ask! Simple. Openness.
I’m known because I choose to be & I know others because I choose to know them.
We meet, we share about our lives, we eat together & we do this regularly. Real community – the kind that allows you to belong – is achieved by giving time to one another often.
Tom works in the city & supports Awaken Movement UK. He spends most of his time playing with Excel spread sheets, thinking up awful jokes, leading worship & working with young people. When he isn't doing all of these things he's playing enough FIFA to harm his eyes for life & occasionally spending time with his better half.
@ Twitter: tommypickering