Where are those invisible lines drawn? Are they completely around your own personal property lines? Are they in a particular place in your neighborhood or your community? They may even be drawn down a certain area in your church auditoriums.
As I look back, I can see those invisible lines that were drawn in my life, some by my parents, some by friends and some by myself. Those lines were determined by many things, as I’m sure when you think back you can also see those lines. But now I find myself as an adult, making my own decisions and drawing my own lines and I see myself questioning my reasoning for line drawing. God started me on a journey several years ago to being more intentional in my relationships. Hebrews 10:24-25, ”And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching”. Being newer to the community of Winchester, I was an outsider and being more intentional meant placing myself into uncharted territories and in some cases some unwelcomed places, but God continued to tell me to move and be intentional. He asked me to erase those invisible lines and welcome others in. Let me tell you, in Winchester as in most small-town communities, that was not easy. Colossians 4:2-6,”Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone”. But now that I’m sitting here several years later, I can tell you it was worth it. I pray that I will continue to be intentional in my relationships.
In today’s cultural climate, what are some ways that each of us can be more intentional about erasing those invisible lines? To some those lines may not be so invisible because they’ve been intentional about drawing them. To some those lines may be glaring, taught to them by their ancestors, that they were not to cross those lines. To some they may, in their heart, want to erase the lines but are full of fear of how they will be received on the other side. And even some may have crossed them and were told they were not welcome. I believe erasing those lines takes bravery, vulnerability and courage. Brene’ Brown says, “Courage is like—it’s a habitus, a habit, a virtue: You get it by courageous acts. It’s like you learn to swim by swimming. You learn courage by couraging.”