"Let's break into small groups."UGH! I absolutely hate that! No seriously...hate is not too strong of a word in this instance. If I'm at a conference or an event that calls for breaking into small groups, I will sneak out of the room. My attitude is that if I want to make friends, I'll do it on my own pace...when I choose to...and with whom I choose. I don't need to "pair up with five people you don't know" to learn whatever the teacher has to say. I am perfectly content to hide in my office at work and not talk to a single person face-to-face all day. In fact, I'd love to work from home so I don't really have to socialize at all. I love sites like myspace--they are about as far from really "socializing" as you can get. You make "friends" that you'll probably never meet. And if you decide you don't want to be "friends" anymore, you just delete them. (It's funny, they call these "social networking" sites. But there's really not anything social about it at all. It's about as impersonal as you can get--and I have to admit, there's a huge part of me that absolutely loves that!) So then I start to think: I don't like crowds. I don't like small groups. Hmmm. Maybe I don't like people. So...what's wrong with that? Well, other than the fact that I'm a music artist that relies on people to buy his product and come to his concerts, there's this verse in Scripture that has really convicted me lately.
"By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another."
The reverend Peter Scholtes put it this way in his famous worship hymn:
"They will know we are christians by our love."
I honestly don't have any idea why I am this way. But it's something I've done since I was a child. I didn't have many friends growing up and I don't remember ever having a friend come over to my house to play. I do remember taking my G.I. Joe into my room and playing for hours...alone...and being perfectly content with it.
Still, I am convicted. I know this is something I need to work on. It will be tough to teach this old dog new tricks, but I am willing to try. Just don't expect any miracles overnight. One step at a time. I'm not gonna go get all warm and fuzzy on ya just yet!